A Quick Update: Some Good News & Some Bad

How’s Everybody Doing?

Hope everybody is well. I wanted to write this update real fast to address a few things going on with me personally outside of the site, and what that means for all of us here at the site itself. So with that being said, let’s get right to it.

First off, I want to make sure that everybody knows that the site isn’t going anywhere. I’ll still be active and contributor content will still come as well. That being said, I personally will be very busy. So what does this mean? More or less, this means that not much will really change on the surface. As I’ve stated before, I was going to be taking things slow until June. This is still true. However, this slow period is going to be extended as far out as September now, which I know is disappointing.

Why’s this happening? This is happening due to my professional life. I am involved with a start up company and as of yesterday (5/17/16) we have succeeded our goal of getting an order in less than 10 weeks. This comes contingent that we can get some stuff done by the end of the month, but we will assuredly manage that. Currently, I cannot disclose our products or our company name, but we will be debuting in a Whole Foods in the Midwest area of the US before the year is out.

1280px-whole_foods_market_logo-svgAlthough a bulk of the work will be going on over the course of the next few weeks, I’m am certain that things will only get busier from there. This means that I may not have enough time to post articles regularly on the site after June like I had hoped. Again, I will still post, but more inline with how I’ve been doing things for the past few months. I recognize that this may be disappointing, but this is the reality of things.

If anybody has any questions, comments, or concerns then feel free to leave them in the comments below. I will address them as I am able and hope that all of you can understand that these are crazy, exciting, and busy times for me.

-Jon Spencer

‘The Jungle Book’ Film Review.

Score: 3.5 out of 5
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jungle_book_ver5The jungle has never been brighter, the story has never been more mature, and the effects are quite decent in Disney’s ‘The Jungle Book.’ Jon Favreau – who you may know as the director of ‘Iron Man’ 1 & 2 and ‘Chef’, which he took the main role as a struggling cook – has given us his vision of not only the Rudyard Kipling books, but the original animated Disney movie which showed us a positive dancing blue bear named Baloo who became friends with a stubborn, yet cheerful man-cub named Mowgli. In this film, Mowgli is played by Neel Sethi, who is almost comparable to the animated man-cub. Sadly, his performance is disappointing; his delivery starts off as a boy who can’t project or scream when a bear wakes him up.

Continue reading “‘The Jungle Book’ Film Review.”

What’s Jon Doing? May 2016

Hey There!

This article is part of a monthly series that is updated throughout he month so that readers can see what I’m up to since I don’t always have the time to post. Be sure to check back every few days to see new what I’ve added. This is article 1 in the series.

This is a new series I’ll be starting up here on my site. The series will detail what shows I’m watching, games I’m playing, and the stuff I buy that is hobby related. Why am I doing this? The reason behind this decision is to let you guys know what I’m doing during the month, even when I can’t post often. This post will be updated on a weekly bases AT MINIMUM. With that being said, let’s get this series started.

Stuff I Bought

In this segment I’ll tell you what hobby stuff I bought and why. This month I bought the following items for my hobbies:

Of course I might end up picking up more stuff, but that’s what I grabbed for the month so far. Each item is linked to where I bought it from and details on the product itself. Here’s why I bought what I bought.

The Garden of Sinners has always been an interesting film franchise for me. There are numerous reviews and critiques of the series and when I first started getting into anime these videos quickly caught my attention due to crisp visuals and supposed superb writing. I had originally gotten my hands on the DVD release, but after having seen part of the series I had wanted to upgrade to Blu-ray ever since. Normally, I wouldn’t be able to drop this kind of cash on just one show but I made a special exception since my birthday was in April and I had a bit of extra cash. Here’s a review from Glass Reflection, albeit a bit older:

Note that I am not associated with Tristan or his YouTube channel. I included this review in particular over a newer one since Tristan avoids spoiling the series and reviews it in a short video.

Shirobako was purchased due to its praise on its look at the anime industry as a whole. I’ve been waiting ages to watch this one, so it’s no surprise that I added it to my collection. If you don’t know much about this one, I’ll point you again to Tristan’s review which I’ll provide below.

Same here, not associated with Tristan’s channel. The video is provided solely for context and to offer an example of what the show is like. This video is newer and of much higher quality than the one above.

The remaining two anime items (Your Lie in April set 2 and Tokyo Ghoul Season 2) were purchased because I have the other parts to them. Your Lie in April is a show I have been waiting anxiously to watch since it is absolutely beautiful, in addition to being exactly the kind of show I know I’ll love. With Tokyo Ghoul, I heard this show is pretty so-so and I may even dislike the second season in general. However, I bought it so it would match my collector’s set of season 1, but I like to own what I watch regardless. At worst, it’ll look nice on the shelf until I get around to viewing both seasons.

Lastly, (for now at least) I also picked up Battleborn for a buddy and myself. Looking forward to killing some time with this one until Overwatch comes out later this month. I’ll likely spread my time pretty evenly between the two when I do play games with my friends.

New Additions!

Rightstuf had a crazy sale today (5/16/16) so decided to pick these titles up dirt cheap. The first title is one I’ve heard of, but wasn’t really interested at full price. However, for $7.50 it seems well worth it. The K-ON! movie was an easy choice, now just need to actually by the series. That being said, buying the movie now will save me since it was on the buy list regardless. Lastly, Canaan is one of those shows I’ve heard a lot about but not actually seen. Reviews are pretty solid and considering the price, I decided to just throw it in.

(Probably) Last up for the month, I caved and bought Overwatch. I really enjoyed the open beta portion and stress test weekend. Surprisingly, many people I know actually got this, so I picked it up. Should be fun!

Turns out I was wrong in the last paragraph! Rightstuf had ANOTHER crazy sale for Senti shows. This time I only picked up the first part of Space Brothers since it was so cheap and already on the buy list. The other titles in this sale are mostly fantastic, but I own a majority of them as is. If you haven’t already, I recommend you check it out.

Shows I’m Watching:

This segment will feature the date I watched something and what episodes I watched. I will note when a show is completed and occasionally offer quick thoughts there. Other bits of information and such may be provided if, and when I think it’s necessary.

Viewing List With Dates

5/6/16 Viewed episodes 7-9 of Boogiepop Phantom and episode 8 of Dimension WI. I also watched the two newest episodes of Adventure Time in terms of non-anime related shows.

5/7/16 Watched a few episodes of Jimmy Neutron‘s final season. My friends and I are re-watching older cartoons from our childhoods and discussing our thoughts and feelings on an episode to episode basis. At some point, we may do a podcast style discussion which may end up on here. Additionally, watched episodes 7-9 of Girls Und Panzer6.

5/8/16 Completed Boogiepop Phantom (episodes 10-12). Scored the show a 7/10 and would recommend to fans of shows like Serial Experiments Lain. Unlike Lain, this show was easier to follow but was noticeably similar.

5/13/16 Watched episodes 1-3 of Aldnoah.Zero. So far the series has a strong start. I’m aware that the series is supposed to go down hill after episode 12, but I’m hopeful that I will still enjoy it. The first 3 episodes were exciting and I watched them back-to-back when I had only planned to watch one. At the moment it gives me similar vibes to Guilty Crown but without the magic and having a stronger lead character.

Additionally, watched the first season of The Legend of Korra with some friends. I’ve seen the full series but they haven’t seen any of it until now. Season 1 was decent but definitely looking forward to the stronger 3rd and 4th seasons. Season 2 will most definitely be the hardest to watch if memory serves.

5/14/16 This one’s going to be a bit longer. Saturday tends to be the day I watch more TV than not. This is partially due to the fact that this is the only day I really hang out with friends, except on rare occasions. Starting this list, we watched some good ol’ Jimmy Neutron. We then enjoyed episodes 3-5 of Sakamoto which were down right hilarious. This reminds me, if I list episodes in the middle like I just did, it’s because I already started the show before I was doing this new series and have already seen those episodes.

Moving on, we watched the brief, but funny, Luluco episodes 6-7. Episode 7 was of particular note and should be seen by any fan of Kill La Kill most definitely. One of the funniest series of “in jokes” (though blatant) in anime that I’ve seen in awhile. Next up was The Lost Village episodes 5-7. Episode 6 really started kicking this show into gear. The show had been good before, but this only furthered my interest in it. The last show I watched with my friends was Aldnoah.Zero episodes 1-3. I had already seen these, but they wanted to check it out.

Lastly for the day, I watched an episode of Elementry, episode 9 of Dimension W, episode 4 of Aldnoah, and episode 3 of season 5 of Psych. I watched these ones on my own though. All of which I enjoyed. Expect this watch list to be a lot less active during the week to come, going to be busy.

5/17/16 Enjoyed episodes 6-8 of Aldnoah.Zero. Not really seeing how this show is going to drastically go down hill as many people tell me it will. That being said, haven’t gotten to the turning point yet. Regardless, the music and animation are fantastic.

Ok, this weekend I watched quite a lot of stuff. I normally watch a bit more, but I did even more so than usual. First up 5/20/16 Finished season 1 (ep 9-18) of Aldnoah.Zero. I thought it was quite strong and rated a solid 8/10. Continued Dimension W and made it through episodes 10-11. Looking forward to the show’s conclusion. I started Hunter X Hunter (2011 version) viewing episodes 1-3. So far I am enjoying it but the English voice actors threw me off a bit. Lastly, watched the first 3 episodes of Steven Universe’s 3rd season. Excited as ever to see this series continue. Slightly disappointed with the cluster situation though, felt a lot like Adventure Time’s 5th season conclusion.

5/21/16 Luluco episode 8 (no real comments though this season seems to have a theme). Sakamoto was funny as ever with its 6th episode. Clearly more than meets the eye going on with this series that hasn’t ceased to entertain at all. The Lost Village had a frustrating (characters are unbelievably annoying at times, though it all makes sense in context. It’s just frustrating to watch sometimes), but enjoyable 8th episode. The surprise ending was easily the best part of the episode. This series has been a pleasant surprise. Watched some RWBY S2 ep 4-5. It’s a good series. Almost finished Jimmy Neutron and did complete Girls Und Panzer which was enjoyable but ultimately pretty silly. A decent 7/10.

5/22/16 Watched some Psyche (S5 eps 5-6). Also finished Aldnoah.Zero which I kept waiting to become “horrible” but it never really did. I thoroughly enjoyed it overall. I’d give the series as a whole an 8/10.

5/24/16 Watched the first two episodes of Shirobako which were pretty cool. My only complaint is that there is WAY too much subtitling on screen for several of the frames. If I wasn’t watching on my laptop it’d be really hard to read any of that, not that it isn’t somewhat difficult as is.

5/27/16 Didn’t watch a whole lot. Just a few episodes of NCIS and a few episodes of anime. Watched Konosuba episode 1-3 and Kids on the Slope episodes 1-4. Everything was pretty enjoyable, but my favorite was Kids on the Slope which exceeded my expectations.

5/28/16 Watched the next episode of The Lost Village, Sakamoto, and Luluco. Picked back up with Fleet High School (ep. 2-4) which is surprisingly interesting. It’s dumb in much the same way that Girls Und Panzer was but has managed to be more engaging and compelling so far.

5/29/16 Caught up with Elementry, Steven Universe, and watched a random episode of Adventure Time. Didn’t do much TV watching Sunday. *EDIT* Forgot that I finished up Dimension W as well. Enjoyed it, but the ending was a bit cheesy. It could do with a second seasons since it feels like it had a lot more story left to tell. Solid 6/10.

5/30/16 Am now current with Hunter X Hunter and must say that the hunter exam is really interesting conceptually. Not sure how I’ll enjoy the show overall, but I am really enjoying this part. Also caught up with NCIS which had a nice send off episode for Anthony’s character. Lastly got all the way up to episode 13 of Shirobako.

This list is up to date as of 5/31/16.

Games I’m Playing (Board, Card, and Video)

This segment is dedicated to what board, card, and video games I’ve been playing. This segment will be done similarly to the “Watching” segment, but will not always feature dates.

Board & Card Games

This month I played a few board games so far. On 5/6/16 I played Spector Ops and Tobago. The next day, I replayed these games and also played For Sale with a different group. I may get to reviewing one of these games this month since I’ve had the chance to play them enough. I’ll probably not get to play many more board and card games this month.

Video Games

For video games I’ve been avidly playing Hearthstone since the newest expansion hit recently. Been enjoying it so far. I also got the chance to play Overwatch. I’ll probably pick this one up once it comes out. Beyond this, been switching between Rocket League and Verdun when gaming with friends.

Played a few hours of Battleborn on 5/11/16 and 5/12/16. The game is really fun, but it’s so poorly optimized. I exceed specs, but the game is still pretty lag intense. The problem varies from map to map and mode to mode. Too bad, because I would really enjoy the game otherwise.

Tons and tons of Overwatch since its release. The game is really fun and I like it. One complaint is that sometimes the matchmaking isn’t very good. Some people don’t get the concept of playing the objective or switching their hero when they need to. This can make for some frustrating games. As a whole though, very fun.

And That’s It!

*Phew* That sure is a lot. I’ll be updating this as often as possible so be sure to check back every few days to see what I’ve been up to. This post will be pinned to the front page each month so it’s easy to find. If you have any suggestions on how I might format this in the future, or have any general comments about what I’ve been up to, then be sure to let me know in the comments below. Lastly, be sure to like this post if it’s something you want me to keep doing. This is an experiment right now, so if there isn’t much interest after a few of these I may stop doing them altogether. Commenting, liking, and sharing let me know  that this is content you care about!

Until next time,

Jon Spencer

‘The Boss’ Film Review.

Score: 4 out of 5
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boss_ver2Melissa McCarthy struts herself with style, which includes a turtleneck in every scene she shows up in with frizzy red hair; in her husband’s, Ben Falcone’s new movie ‘The Boss’. From the first moment we see her shout at a crowd as if she were a motivational speaker, this movie seems like it’s trying too hard for pop-culture references, celebrity cameos (Kathy Bates as her former supporter, Ida Marquette), and crude, yet unnecessary, sex jokes that would make any pastor blush. I have to disagree with the tomatometer on Rotten Tomatoes (17%) by saying that I had a good time watching ‘The Boss’.

Continue reading “‘The Boss’ Film Review.”

Monthly Update: May 2016

Hello Everybody!

Sure feels like I’ve been away from this forever almost. I’ve been dealing a lot with work and school, but we’ll get into that a bit more in a second. April was a slow month for us, but we still managed to get some reviews out there thanks to Jacob. He’s been a great help so be sure to let him know you appreciate his hard work!

April Thoughts

Like I said, April was entirely Jacob’s month. I didn’t get anything out for you guys 😦 which is disappointing to say the least. You may be asking, “Jon, where have you been?” This is a fair question that I want to address.

As some of you may know, have another job that involves starting up a company. Our goal is to take a product (or in our case products) from conception to launch within a ten week period. We already are in talks with Whole Foods and yoFo u can expect to see our products on the shelves by summer. It’s an amazing opportunity, but it’s a HUGE time sink. I had planned on writing about it, but at the moment it’s very secretive so I can’t really say much else.

Other than that, I’ve also been working hard on my school work. Classes are boring this term but involve a lot of work. Ironically, for one class I even have to manage a blog. However, it’s incredibly dull and pretty uninspired stuff. If there’s a lot of interest for it (for some reason) I’ll move it over to here. Topics discussed are email ad campaigns, social media in advertising, and other such similar topics.

Plans For The Month

I have some plans for this moth! That being said, things will still be slow for the next two months as I mentioned in last month’s update. To compensate for that, I’ll be starting a new monthly segment sometime this week or next. In this segment I will show you guys what anime, board games, or other site related stuff I bough for the month and why. To boot, I’ll also be tracking what I’ve watched and played on the site for you guys as well.

The plan so far is to make a post similar to this one but continually update it as the month goes on. If anybody has any ideas for this that are easy to implement I’m all ears! Hopefully, this will fill the void when I’m unable to produce content regularly like I would like to.

That’s it for this month! Stay awesome everybody.

-Jon Spencer