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  1. I was first informed of the existence of The Kurosagi Corpse Delivery Service at Anime Weekend Atlanta, my local yearly anime convention, last autumn. A Dark Horse editor was holding a panel on manga market trends and he showed those of us in attendance some upcoming releases. Immediately, when he described the plot of Kurosagi, I thought to myself, That's brilliant! Much like Death Note, Kurosagi's story made me wonder, Why didn't I think of that?! The manga details the daily lives of five students at a Buddhist university, each of whom possess a skill that helps them solve the mysteries of the dearly departed. When I finally managed to get a copy of the first volume, I was not disappointed. The Kurosagi Corpse Delivery Service can best be described as a bizarre amalgamation of Law & Order: Criminal Intent and Raines, with a smattering of Scooby-Doo here and there all wrapped up in an attractive Japanese manga shell.

    The above is from: http://www.earth-2.net/reviews/a/kurosagi-corpse-01


  2. Both stylistically and conceptually, Pinhead of the Hellraiser series is one of the most intriguing characters in horror cinema. While he may not have the household name recognition of Jason or Freddy, I would argue that visually he is as recognizable as a hockey mask-wearing killing machine or a gloved burn victim. Pinhead and his cadre of demonic sadists, called the Cenobites, have always been supporting characters in their own films. Like the aforementioned horror icons, this is the best way to portray a monster. It is only when the focus of the film is put on the monster, rather than the people pursued by said monster, when poor movies are guaranteed. In the strange case of the Cenobites, this has never changed and yet they still have lost their way.

    The above is from: http://www.earth-2.net/columns/reddick/reel-dread-25


  3. The Final Fantasy series has built its name on experimentation, constant reinvention and almost universal adulation. No two games are exactly alike, and fans who understand that basic concept have welcomed the changes between chapters with open arms. It's a risky business - taking a formula that's known, loved and praised, shaking things up a bit and waiting to see what effect it has on the overall picture. Sometimes these risks pay off handsomely, as with the materia system in Final Fantasy VII or the junctioning of Final Fantasy VIII. Other times they drag it down, as evidenced by the confusing online play of Final Fantasy XI and the job system of Final Fantasy V. Fans of the series generally have a very clear-cut list of favorites and least favorites - it's easy to write the whole line off after a bad choice, as many did with the aforementioned leap into the MMORPG genre, but if you've been paying attention you should know that sooner or later they'll hit a goldmine and deliver a game that is not to be missed. Look at the amazing jump taken between FFV, generally considered one of the worst of the series, to FFVI, critically acclaimed as one of its best. It's exactly that cyclical nature that keeps me interested in this series and brought me out to the store on FFXII's launch day, $60 in hand. I've scarcely put down the controller since.

    The above is from: http://www.earth-2.net/reviews/v/final-fantasy-12


  4. The shadow of terrorism and an unpopular war loomed over the world. Earthquakes, hurricanes and tsunamis claimed millions of lives worldwide. Death and destruction were plastered everywhere: on TV, in the papers, across the vast Internet, on the lips of strangers. Some feared the end times were near. When the global climate is filled with dread and political unrest, when the world seems to be fighting back, that's when zombies become vogue. And though it had been over 20 years since Day of the Dead, the time for George A. Romero's return - the time for him to show us how it's done - was at hand.

    The above is from: http://www.earth-2.net/columns/reddick/reel-dread-24


  5. There's lots of post-Civil War comic book talk in this episode, including discussions about Iron Man #15, Captain America #25, Civil War: The Confession, Civil War: The Initiative and The Mighty Avengers #1. There's also a frank dialogue about how the media handled the major news spawning out of Captain America #25, and what the comic book industry can do to entice the masses. [ 1:49:57 || 50.3 MB ]

    The above is from: http://www.earth-2.net/theshow/episodes/e2ts_091.mp3


  6. In the first of a multipart series, Mike and James reviewed the inaugural five episodes of Batman: The Animated Series. Thanks to its moody approach, orchestral score and deep characterization, the show is considered a classic. However, only one of the five episodes demonstrated the full potential of the series. Which one was it, who did Mike call "the greatest character in all of TV" and how is "Pretty Poison" like A Tale of Two Cities? [ 1:17:32 || 35.4 MB ]

    The above is from: http://www.earth-2.net/theshow/episodes/e2ts_090.mp3


  7. For Jason Voorhees, it was a measured decline from scary to ridiculous. For Freddy Krueger, it was the quick shift from scary to hilarious. Michael Myers, from the Halloween film series, is perhaps the most interesting case of the bunch. Myers' history is spotted with plot confusion and continuity issues. But, it can be altered through selective viewing to make the Halloween series the greatest horror trilogy ever produced. I've been rather negative in the past two columns, so the following is my treatise on how to fix the Halloween franchise.

    The above is from: http://www.earth-2.net/columns/reddick/reel-dread-23


  8. It was a time when weapons were being exchanged for hostages. Money was given to corrupt revolutionaries to overthrow communist governments. Great strides were taken in technology, especially when it comes to robotics and space exploration. But the shadow of the Cold War loomed over the world, adding a sinister atmosphere to it all. The Cold War of the 1950s and 60s pitted "us" versus "them," however, by the 1980s a general distrust for all involved had formed. And, if the rest of the Dead Cycle taught us anything, it's that humans can't be trusted.

    The above is from: http://www.earth-2.net/columns/reddick/reel-dread-22


  9. I'll tell the truth: when I first caught a glimpse of this game's direction, I wasn't thrilled. While one of its big selling points was its return to familiar territory - an escape from the technological espionage of the first two Metal Gear Solids and a revisitation of the jungle-themed environmental warfare of the very earliest Metal Gears - I was never much of a fan of the earlier games in the series to begin with. The 8-bit games were all too detailed, too slow-paced and too faceless to really grab my attention.

    The above is from: http://www.earth-2.net/reviews/v/metal-gea...d-3-subsistence


  10. A few weeks ago I took a look at George A. Romero's Night of the Living Dead, delving into the characters and what they symbolically represented in regards to Americans and the Vietnam War. In this chapter of Reel Dread, however, I don't intent to dive so far into the symbolism of Dawn of the Dead, simply because I don't believe that much symbolism exists in the 1978 feature. That's not to say Dawn is without its intricacies; it simply wears its analogies on its sleeve.

    The above is from: http://www.earth-2.net/columns/reddick/reel-dread-20


  11. Let me preface this by saying that I tend to get my hopes up when it comes to films I'm excited for. Yet they never live up to the self-induced hype, and sever only to disappoint. I'm not alone in this, I'm sure of it. Regardless, my anticipation for Behind the Mask: The Rise of Leslie Vernon began with a short blurb about its production in an issue of Rue Morgue in late 2005, and I made mention of it a few weeks back in Dark Prophecies and Bad Omens: Anticipating 2007. As fate would have it, a screener DVD fell into my lap, but I was somewhat hesitant to press play; I didn't want my hopes dashed... again. There was just no way Behind the Mask could live up to my high expectations, or so I thought.

    The above is from: http://www.earth-2.net/columns/reddick/reel-dread-19