spear of destiny

Arby’s and Their Brilliant Targeting of Fandom

I don’t think I’ve eaten at Arby’s since I was in college. I liked their little meat and bread balls when I was kid too but never really frequented the establishment much.

Since college, the chain got associated with nerdom as a cheap and easy place to go eat fast food. I wish I knew the mechanics of how that happened but I was too busy being cool and working on the internet in it’s early days to get wrapped up in it.

Fast forward to the days of Facebook being the home for many brand campaigns and you get to the real genius of Arby’s social media marketing. They clearly know their audience and know how to make a connection with that audience.

They have many segments targeted by their content; they have posts for sports people, hunters, and military people. Since I’m a geek, those are the ones I’m going to show you. They got my attention with this ad targeting anime fans. Targeting old-ish school fans at that – Neon Genesis Evangelion is over 20 years old at this point.

Shinji and Arby's

If you get the reference, you understand the 50 shades of awesome that are shown in one picture.

For gamers, they have a few that are really cool but I like this Metroid video created using food wrappers:

Who else caters to fandom well on the internet?

My Hero Academia

My Hero Academia

My Hero Academia is a cute show. I’ve been watching since is started on VRV earlier this year. In all honesty, I didn’t want to watch it at first as it seemed kind of dumb, but  the Mr. convinced me that I should give it a try. I was hooked after one episode. Here is the synopsis from Funimation:

In a world where eighty percent of the population has some kind of super-powered “quirk,” Izuku was unlucky enough to be born completely normal. But that won’t stop him from enrolling in a prestigious hero academy. Now, the promising freshman class is making its debut at the world-renowned U.A. Sports Festival! It’s Quirk versus Quirk as our young heroes face off in the ultimate showdown.

The main character’s devotion to Quirks, even though he’s totally normal, is pretty amazing.

Izuku Midoria, the main character

Moofia! Tokidoki + Fred 62

Breakfast this weekend turned from trying a new place to happy, happy land when we arrived at Fred 62. They were overtaken by Tokidoki!! The food was really great but the service a little slow. We will definitely be going back for munching later, though.

It was a very Japanese style pop up restaurant with a Tokidoki set menu and swag for purchase.

I got a blind box toy and a t-shirt. Let’s just say, “breakfast was extra pricey today.” The t-shirt was $20 and the blind box toy, $8.

I also got a Fred 62 + Tokodoki sticker

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shiny chariot magic festa poster

Little Witch Academia

I took a little bit of a hiatus from anime after my last trip to Japan in 2015 so I’m a little behind on series. I’ve slowly been catching up with the help of VRV and Netlix.

I really enjoyed Little Witch Academia on Netflix. It’s really sweet story of a girl coming into her own at school. Granted – the school is a little unusual and it is definitely an adventure for our main character, Akko. She wants to be a witch that makes people happy just like her hero, Shiny Chariot.

akko as a teen and as a kid in witch outfit

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Fangirling: Westworld

The original Westworld came out in 1973 – and for the time, it was brilliant. Michael Crichton wrote and directed the film and the star was Yul Brynner.  

The 2016 version of Westworld is far more interesting. It’s written and directed by Jonathan Nolan, who is the brother of Christopher Nolan, and wrote the scripts for a couple of my favorite movies, Interstellar and Memento. I really admire the work of Jonathan Nolan as he plays with the idea of subjective reality. Memento is a story of a man who lost his memory and what the reality of his situation is while Interstellar is a story that takes place over time, in multiple realities.

The new Westworld is no different. Without giving too much away – Nolan tells you all you need to know in the first half of the series and shows you the reality in the second half of the series by piecing together the various threads of the story lines. All of reality is subjective for the characters.

His work reminds me, very much, of Philip K. Dick – who is best known for his kooky, futuristic stories that play with the idea that what most people think is real, is not. It’s clear to me that Nolan is a fan, but he tells his stories visually and with much more polish. The Mr. and I were joking after watching the last episode of Westworld, that the best PKD stories aren’t written by him.

The characters are well cast – Evan Rachel Wood does and stellar job as Delores, our main “host.” The actors fit for the roles they play, though I will say, Anthony Hopkins is very Anthony Hopkins. He plays his role exactly as you’d expect.

I had a TON of nits to pick while the series was in flight – all but one of them was resolved by the last episode. It’s apparent, after finishing the series, that Nolan had a very clear vision of the story as he wanted to tell it.

I HIGHLY recommend watching it as soon as you get the chance.

Have you seen it? What did you think? Comments are appreciated.

Side Note – this was scheduled to publish on another blog on Christmas Day, the day I was admitted to Cedars and almost died. I moved the content here because I like it.

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Fangirling: The Expanse

Last year when the SyFy channel launched the series, I was little dubious. They have some REALLY crappy shows on the air. Amazon – as it happens sometimes – had a preview episode for Prime users. I watched the first episode and was hooked, I mean HOOKED. Bought the first book and devoured it, reading non-stop. I swear I tried to pace myself and not finish the book before the season was over. But I was not very successful with my attempt. Such a great show and a great series.

Here is a summary of the plot from Amazon:

The Expanse is a thriller set two hundred years in the future, after mankind has colonized the solar system. A hardened detective (Thomas Jane, Hung) and a rogue ship’s captain (Steven Strait, Magic City) come together for what starts as the case of a missing young woman and evolves into a race across the solar system to expose the greatest conspiracy in human history.

The show is not without it’s faults. Mainly that Season 1 ends long before the first book does but there are others:

  • The casting is terrible for all but a few characters – one set of humans in space is supposed to look a certain way and it doesn’t hold true for any of the main characters
  • The ship design is kind of “meh” – not very exciting or original

The best casting was Wes Chatham for Amos. He is a central character in both the books and the series. The picture pretty well sums up his character.

My biggest pet peeve for the show is ChrisJen Avasarala. I absolutely ADORE the actress who plays her, Shohreh Aghdashloo, but she plays the role without ANY of the light or spark of the character in the book.

Speaking of the books, they are great. It’s a series of three novels and three stories about the crew’s past.  The main three books should definitely be read in order but the back stories do not need to be. They definitely add to the depth of the characters but even after reading them, I did not find it necessary to go back and read through the first three again.

Have you seen the show or read the books? What do you think about the series?

*note – links to Amazon.com are affiliate links and we may receive a commission if you purchase any items after visiting the links.*

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A brief history of goth

Oh holy smokes! As an old school Siouxsie Sioux era goth, I laughed and laughed and laughed as I watched. Revel in your history, Gloomy Ones….

https://www.facebook.com/plugins/video.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2FPitchfork%2Fvideos%2F10154578472321000%2F&show_text=0&width=560

Even if you aren’t a current or former Goth, It’s still a pretty cute video.

Fangirling: Yasunori Mitsuda

Many, many years ago a lovely little game came out called, Chrono Cross. It’s been so long that I barely remember playing it. The one piece that has stuck with me is the music and that is where Yasunori Mitsuda comes in. He is the composer of the fabulous music in the game. I listen to it often and have to say, the music in it is one of the most touching and enduring sound tracks I’ve ever heard. Even the “tense” battle music is not enough to rattle me.

I’ve mentioned that I have a horrible commute and this soundtrack is the only thing that helps me keep calm in the throws of my “why is everyone so dumb behind the wheel,” lamentations on the road. It’s very soothing music; my favorites are the main theme and the songs for the happy villages.

You might recognize some of his other music from Xenosaga, Bomberman, Mega Man Legends, or Super Smash Bros.

I highly recommend listening.

The music in me….

Many years ago, I was an audio engineer for a small anime company. I recorded all the actors giving their lines and set them up to play over the Japanese audio. What I learned in the studio was I enjoyed working with audio and pretty soon I found digital audio programs that allowed me to start generating music. I did a few pieces for some corporate videos and the music for a fashion show along with entries to a few music contest.

I let it go shortly after moving to Los Angeles, for many reasons but mostly because I was travelling almost 3 hours a day to and from work for the first year. I then started working at Disney and that job, essentially, took over my life for the next eight years. It’s not as sad as it sounds – I LOVED, LOVED, LOVED working there and worked my ass off to match my passion for entertainment.

In the last few years as music has become more and more highly produced as well as digitally created – everything from the instruments to even the singer’s sometimes, like Hatsuni Miku, and I’ve been inspired again.

I picked up a synthesizer a few weeks ago and have started mucking about with a few different audio production programs. We’ll see how it all goes.

I used to post my work on AcidPlanet.com back in the but it’s been long abandoned since Acid has been owned by multiple companies over the years. I only have a few of my original songs on my computer and I had to pull them from very old back up CDs. If I can find a reasonable place to post them, I’ll update this post.

Fallout Universe

This article contains affiliate links to Amazon 🙂

I really like the Fallout universe  – my husband has played every version of the game while I watched. The stories are great and the characters are really engaging. Fallout 4 was the first one I played myself and thought it was a great game. I wasn’t too happy with the end but I won’t spoil it for you if you haven’t played.

Every game is a gritty, post-apocalyptic world where the survivors of nuclear war are either naive “Vault Dwellers” (the main character of every game) or “Wasteland Wanders” (the people you have to figure out). Each game is set someplace different in the United States and it’s interesting to see how the setting effects the story. The teams working on the games created some really ingenious tools & weapons go along with their compelling stories.

There is a ton of cool Fallout themed gear available if you really like the world created for the games. I think my favorite is the Art of Fallout 4 book. It includes some AMAZING artwork and more detailed views of the objects in game. A very close second in the “favorite gear” category are the Funko Pop! Vinyl figures. I have the Dogmeat figure as well as the male & female wanderers. SO CUTE!

One of the factions from Fallout 3 or New Vegas (I can’t remember) is the New California Republic. It’s a pretty funny spin the teasing name I heard from my conservative friends back in the South: “the People’s Republic of California” They even had a flag. Husband even designed his own take on their logo:

I don’t remember there being much for the previous games as merchandise has really been taken up a few notches in the last few years.

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