neil hughes/mmc3260

Rants

Here are a few rants of mine. I tend to ramble about stupid stuff that I find amusing or worthwile, and hopefully you'll enjoy reading about it.

Shaq Attaq

Any time I see Shaq doing anything, I think comedy is being pushed to its limits. Maybe it's just me, but I would say that Shaq is the most unintentionally funny man to come along since John Travolta.

Now Shaq is no stranger to advertising. I enjoyed his "Shaq Pack" meal at Burger King, I think "Kazaam" was a masterpiece of modern cinema, and most of all, his rap talent is second to none. Perhaps most famous is the "Shaq-Fu" videogame, which I am proud to say I have played and enjoyed.

I even remember his six pack of soda from the early 90s called the "Shaq Paq," which would explain why Burger King's meal lost out with the grammatically correct spelling. Pepsi's 'Q' sure made their product a hell of a lot cooler!

So it was with great joy that I saw Shaq's new commercial for Radio Shack, in which, at the end, our hero suggested that the name of the store be changed to "Radio Shaq."

I was overcome with excitement! Then, I began to wonder... what other avenues could Shaq explore to exploit his image and brand his name? Most importantly, what products could be improved by the trademark 'Q'? Oh, the possibilities...

"HEART ATTAQ"

We've all heard of the "Shaq Attaq," and Shaq sure does kill 'em on the court, but heart attacks are the number one killer in America. I think Shaq should champion a series of informative videos on heart attacks.

But as we all know, it's hard to keep people's attention, especially if you're teaching them something that could potentially save their lives.

hilarity ensuesThat's why Shaq should do his videos dressed in the full costume he wore in his movie "Steel."

And he definitely needs to rap at least once whilst demonstrating his "Shaq-Fu" skills for a good cardio workout.

Gotta keep a healthy heart! And who would know better than Shaq?

"CRAQ"

Everyone's favorite cheap and friendly drug is infinitely more entertaining when Shaq is involved. Drugs are the most universal message presented by today's role models as the "in" lifestyle to our kids, but Shaq seems to be missing out on this trend. In turn, he's losing a valuable opportunity to market himself to the youth of America. All the other celebrities are selling it, so why can't Shaq?

"BERNIE MAQ"

Since Bernie Mac has sunk to filling Bill Murray's shoes in Bill Murray's worst role, his career could use a real boost. And so could Shaq's!

Today's cloning technology could merge Shaq and Bernie Mac, creating Bernie Maq.

I feel quite confident that the creature "Bernie Maq" would undoubtedly be the Antichrist, but I also feel it would make a fantastic publicity stunt. Nothing equals ratings like Armageddon!

That's a negative, Ghost Rider. The pattern is full."



It's no secret that my favorite all-time comic book is Ghost Rider. And anyone who follows comic book movies (hopefully you all do so over at the fantastic SuperHeroHype.com) knows that Nic Cage has been talking forever about doing the Ghost Rider film. And now it appears it is official, with a January date set for filming.

So is this good news or bad news? Of course any classic comic getting big-budget treatment on the big screen is exciting, but I can't help but question the fact that Mark Steven Johnson is in the director's chair for this one. He, for those of you who don't know, is the jerk who directed the exceedingly mediocre "Daredevil," starring his comrade, Ben Affleck.

If it wasn't for Jennifer Garner being hot and the fact that they played "Top O' the Mornin' to Ya" by House of Pain while Bullseye threw paper clips into a guy's trachea, it might have made me slit my throat in the theater. But there's always the "Elektra" spin-off coming out to accomplish that for me.

From Empire Online:

"Well I wonít be THAT face," said Cage, who revealed that the Rider's face will be largely CG. "But itís important to the filmmaker that thereís still moments in the CGI of the face where you can still see my own expressions, so I can work that out with them. Itís hard to have a skull make facial expressions."

This, however, is contradicted by the jerk himself, Mark Steven Johnson:

MSJ revealed the look of Ghost Rider and its villains. He said on GR's appearance "Don't worry about the look of G.R. He's hard core classic, just like Tex drew him."

What to think of this? Hopefully we won't see too much of Nic Cage. I can just imagine this film getting bastardized really quickly by a bunch of suits. "Why is his head a skull? Does it have to be on fire? But this film is starring Nic Cage! He's an action star! We want to have his face in there!"

They're going with the original Ghost Rider story, which features John Blaze instead of Dan Ketch, another wise decision. How much of the Ghost Rider bloodline backstory involving Noble Kale that will make the cut of the movie (if any) remains to be seen. Perhaps it would be for the best if this portion of the story were excluded.

According to the same article, the villian for the film will be Blackheart, son of Mephisto. This is the appropriate choice, as Blackheart is Ghost Rider's biggest arch-nemesis and has the best storylines throughout the series of the comic.

At this point, it's all up in the air. Cage seems to be a big fan of the Ghost Rider comic. He apparently sports a Johnny Blaze tattoo and has been involved in this project for a long, long time. MSJ is a questionable addition to the project, but if the script they're working with is solid, he can't mess it up too much.

Time will tell. Ghost Rider features a deep, complex story with a lot of cool ideas and characters. Hopefully it won't be turned into a Punisher-style mindless shoot-em-up with a flaming dude on a motorcycle killing people. I mean, that would be cool and the 12 year old fanboy inside of me would shout for joy, but with something I love as much as Ghost Rider, I'd prefer something that will stand the test of time.

For every Hellboy there is a Hulk, Cage. You claim to be a true fan of the comic. Just remember that the next time you get a royalty check for "Honeymoon in Vegas," because us nerds will have your head if you screw this up.
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2005
Rev. Neil Hughes