Wednesday, May 28, 2008

The Marvelous Misadventures of Flapjack

As an all around cartoon enthusiast, I'm really excited about the upcoming Cartoon Network premiere of The Marvelous Misadventures of Flapjack.

Flapjack was created by known story board artist Mark "Thurop" Van Orman who has worked on other Cartoon Network originals such as Camp Lazlo and The Grim Adventures of Billy and Mandy. The cartoon features Flapjack, a naive young boy who wants to be an adventurer, Bubbie, a whale with a mommy complex, and Captain K'nuckles, a washed-up pirate who's crazy schemes always seem to get the group into trouble.

On first viewing every cartoon fan should recognize that the voice behind K'nuckles is Brian Doyle-Murray who, aside from his film career, is well known as the voice of The Flying Dutchman on Spongebob SquarePants and Coach Gills on Cartoon Network's My Gym Partner is a Monkey. If character voices don't amuse you, maybe the gritty art style will. Check out the website for art, video clips and more!

You can also catch previews in and around Chowder's time slot. The Marvelous Misadventures of Flapjack premieres June 5th at 8:30 PM.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

MySims: Who Wouldn't Want To Play God?

I recently picked up a copy of MySims for the Wii and haven't been able to put it back down. The game is not as detailed as it's bigger siblings in the Sims series, but it's just as much fun. The game features customizable chibi-like characters which makes it an instant eye catcher for any otaku.

After picking a name for your town, you get to choose your skin color, hairstyle, outfit, pair of eyes, mouth and even a voice for your character. You character is then introduced to your town, which since "the builder" left, has fallen into ruin causing most of it's residents to move away. Awwwwwwww! But don't worry! There's still hope! It turns out that you are a builder who is able to harvest essence, the material used to create and decorate buildings and furniture, and save the town!

The residents who haven't moved away give you tasks to create items for them using essence that reflects their character. There are many types of essence and many ways to obtain it. As you complete tasks you are rewarded with new outfits and character features, items, blueprints and tools to obtain new essence. Also as your town grows more people visit the hotel and you get to pick which ones to invite to live in your town. You'll choose where their home will be and design their house based on their character (Please don't give Goth Boy a cutie pie house or he'll cry...).

Unlike the Sims, your characters don't have to eat, sleep, work, clean or use the restroom. Yes, you can still build a usable toilet and you can stop working on tasks at any time to roam the town, eat, sleep and play. There are no timed tasks to perform and no money system.

The only complaints I have about MySims is that it sometimes takes a long time to load and it can be a little glitchy when you build items. I do wish there was a way to create your own characters to live in your town aside from yourself. You can change the look of the other characters but not their names. Also when you run out of spots to build houses on you have to kick people out in order to move new people in and it would be nice if you could take relationships a step beyond "best friends." Still it's a really fun game. Super cute! Super addicting! I recommend it to anyone who likes cute and wants to spend more than a few hours unlocking stuff.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Monkey in the Middle #6 updated today and I am really excited to post my latest Monkey in the Middle comic which parodies the classic Donkey Kong video game.

Check out the other great comics at if you haven't yet. There's something there for everyone!

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Nickelodeon: Teen Nick

Everyone who knows me, knows that cartoons are a big part of my life, and Nick Toons are some of the most successful cartoons on the planet. So it should be no surprise to anyone that I watch Nickelodeon, A LOT.

Often while waiting for my daily Spongebob fix, I catch a corner of one of Nickelodeon's preteen/teen targeted live action shows. Usually I change the channel. Let's face it, once you're over a certain age, stories written around high/middle school drama don't really peek your interests. Besides, the good old days of Hey Dude, Salute Your Shorts and The Adventures of Pete and Pete are long gone. Remember SNICK, Alex Mac, All That, and the spin off, Kenan and Kel? They're gone too and FYI - just like the years we spent watching the original Rugrats, Ren & Stimpy and Doug cartoons, they're not coming back. It's hard for us "old timers" to look at today's teen shows with any sense of respect. (These Kids today and their Zoey 101...)

Still, not all of Nickelodeon's teen programming is as annoying. I have to give credit to the creative teams behind Ned's Declassified School Survival Guide, Drake and Josh, and iCarly. In my opinion, all three shows have featured decent writing, acting and/or interesting new concepts. (It's really saying something when I don't automatically change the channel) Ned's Declassified and Drake and Josh have recently ended. iCarly on the other hand has just started and it's a no brainer that the biggest reason I find this show appealing is their use of the internet (After all, the internet is what I do).

Check out It's not just a site about the show. It's the site that's talked about on the show. It has blogs and info as if the characters from the show are actually maintaining the site. Now, I'm sure that the actors are not behind the site maintenance, but isn't it a nice concept? What's also interesting is that the site, like the show, asks people to send in videos and photos. So, you (or your kids) could wind up on the site or the show. How interactive! Nickelodeon has always been a champ and getting kids involved. Remember the old Halloween "Nick or Treat" contest or how about "Slime Time"?

Although some of us may feel that the glory days of Nick TV are over, likely because we've outgrown it, I'm happy to see the network is keeping with tradition and evolving with the times. iCarly looks like a winner for the network. Hopefully it's exactly what they need to counter act the Spears effect. I am really surprised that the network is still running Zoey 101, but that's a whole different blog post...