JamieRalphGardner

ConDor 2014

The people I met were very nice when I took their photos. I did not see the captions that Jay came up with until the San Diego Reader ConDor photo gallery was put on the website. When I first saw some of the captions that Jay came up, I worried that there would be people who would be offended. I was especially worried about the photos with sexual humour in them. Some of the jokes reminded me of Howard Stern. I believe that Stern can be funny but he can cross the line in to being mean-spirited. In the 1990s, Howard Stern sent Stuttering John to a Lost in Space convention. Since Mark Goddard likes Howard Stern, he took it in good humour when John asked if he ever hit on Penny. Bill Mumy looked angry when he was asked if Doctor Smith ever made a pass at him. I think Don Rickles is very good at sarcastic humour but there are many other people who don't know when they are coming across as mean spirited. Before the negative response to the San Diego Reader ConDor photo gallery, I hoped that people would just accept some of the jokes as in bad taste and not take the captions personally. I think Jay is poking fun at the characters that the cosplay persons are playing rather then the cosplay persons themselves. A number of years ago, someone took a bad photo of me and put it on a website. The guy personally attacked my appearance because I had bad skin at that time, I felt depressed and humiliated. It does bother me when someone is put down for their appearance.
— March 28, 2014 2:49 p.m.

Dark Shadows FANATIC Reviews the Burton/Depp DS

I watched the Tim Burton Dark Shadows when it came on one of the premium channels. It wasn't as much of a comedy as some Dark Shadows fans made it out to be. It especially got much more serious during the last half hour. Through much of the movie, Angelique is potrayed humorously but her capacity for evil comes across very strongly during the final showdown. The actress playing Angelique is entertaining but overly thin in appearance. The TV series actress had an appearance much more like an average person rather then someone suffering from a eating disorder. The Johnny Depp version of Barnabas Collins seems like a combination of the later sympathetic Barnabas Collins and the villian that Barnabas Collins started out as in the TV series. Barnabas Collins does kill some innocent people in the movie. The other supernatural aspects from the TV series, such as the ghost and werewolf, don't show up until the end of the movie. These other elements show why the characters were open to the possibility of vampires existing. It surprises me that there was no build up to the ghost and werewolf. When I first saw Alice Cooper, my first reaction was that he had not aged much. Then I realized that his make-up can conceal how much he has aged. Tim Burton has said that he showed Helena Bonham Carter the Dark Shadows TV series. According to Burton, she criticized the acting in the TV series. She is the one to talk about bad acting! In this movie, I think she did the worst acting that I have ever seen her do. She was OK but not impressive. I liked the early '70s retro feel to the movie. When it comes to too much comedy, there were Land of the Lost fans that had a similar reaction as Dark Shadows fans. I think the difference is that the Land of the Lost movie is a comedy with some drama whereas Dark Shadows is a drama with a significant comedy element. Burton likes to blend comedy with his drama. Even Tim Burton's Batman, which was much more serious then the Adam West Batman, has a lot of humor in it. I like both the Tim Burton Dark Shadows and the Land of the Lost movie even though they have quite a different tone then their source material.
— April 9, 2013 10 p.m.

Comic Fest Oct. 19- 21: '70s Comic Con founders launch new/old convention

The article saying I "promoted local comic-themed events like San Diego’s Monthly Mini-Con" might be misinterpreted by readers. I worked for Paul Martinez who started San Diego’s Greatest Monthly Mini-Con (greatest was actually part of the official name) with 2 other persons. Paul frequently refers to himself as a show promotor so I don't want people to think I was running the convention. Paul's partners dropped out before I started working for him. I first found out about Paul's conventions by picking up a flyer off my car at the Scottish Rite Center. I was attending a comic book convention put on by the Comic Castle comic book store chain. Paul's conventions pre-dated the Comic Castle ones but I had not been aware of them previously. Before I worked for Paul, the conventions were mostly held at the Scottish Rite Center but a significant one was held at the Radisson hotel. The Radisson convention had Jim Valentino as a guest. I previously met Jim Valentino at a Creation convention when I was Junior High school age. I had a very long and memorable conversation with him at the Creation convention. He had become much more famous when the Radisson convention was held. When I first met him, he was mostly known for Normalman (the comic book series that was published by Aardvark-Vanaheim). On my first day working for Paul, he had me dressed up as a Mighty Morphin Power Ranger. Some child thought I was the real thing whereas someone else said I shouldn't quit my day job. My main job for the Paul conventions was delivering flyers but I also recruited dealers and guests, etc.. After Comic Castle stopped doing their conventions, other people came along. There was a La Jolla convention and one held at San Diego State by people who tried combining comic books and sports cards. The only thing to do with sports that interested me about that convention was the 2 San Diego Charger girls that appeared there. Discount Comics did 2 conventions at the Marriott hotel but they had to cancel the third one because they could not recruit enough dealers. Creation used to do Hercules/Xena, Star Trek and X-Files conventions in San Diego. I heard unofficially that their first X-Files convention got 3,000 people. It was the first Creation X-Files convention anywhere so that probably helped it immensely. I heard most of their Star Trek conventions got between 1,500 and 2,000 people. Creation quit San Diego because they thought that not enough people were going to their conventions. Comic-Con International is one of the big exceptions to the rule when it comes to comic book and science fiction conventions doing either just OK or poorly in San Diego.
— October 16, 2012 4 p.m.

What's Your Favorite Twilight Zone?

For me, it's extremely hard to narrow down my favorites episodes because I like so many of them. There is no episode I fully dislike. When I have read comments by Twilight Zone fans on http://twilightzonewor.9.forumer.com, I have noticed that many of them dislike the comedy episodes (with some exceptions). This situation is similar to Night Gallery's short comedy stories. Many fans dislike most of them and yet many were made. Of the comedy episodes of Twilight Zone, the funniest to me is The Bard. Burt Reynold's Marlon Brando imitation is really funny. Reynold's acting in this episode is unique because he was rarely doing comedy in the early '60s. It's easier to narrow down favorite Twilight Zone episodes by category. My favorite George Clayton Johnson scripted episode is Nothing in the Dark. My favorite Earl Hamner Jr. scripted episode is The Hunt. My favorite of the 3 episodes that Jerry Sohl scripted for Charles Beaumont is Living Doll. My favorite Charles Beaumont scripted episodes are Perchance to Dream, Long Live Walter Jameson and The Howling Man. Death Ship, The Invaders, Little Girl Lost, Nick of Time and Nightmare at 20,000 Feet are my favorites of the episodes scripted by Richard Matheson. When it comes to Rod Serling, there are so many favorites that the list would be huge if I tried to list them. My favorite romantic episode is The Long Morrow because of Mariette Hartley being in the cast. My favorite sentimental episode is One For the Angels.
— May 29, 2012 1:25 p.m.

Dark Shadows FANATIC Reviews the Burton/Depp DS

On the internet, there are Dark Shadows fans criticizing the movie based on the trailer. People that are part of the facebook group called Dark Shadows Should NEVER Have Been a Comedy! are boycotting the movie. This reminds of the fans of the 1970s Land of the Lost who were bothered by it being turned in to a comedy. I think both these groups want a movie that has the strengths of the originals but without the weaknesses. In a conversation with Steve Crompton, he said both shows are bad shows that have good ideas. Steve said both shows have flaws with the special effects and the acting. People would forget their lines on Dark Shadows. It was not like a movie in which the director would do a bunch of takes to get the dialogue just right. Dark Shadows was a 5 day a week show. The show needed to be done quickly. Over a year ago, I talked to a customer at Blockbuster Video who watched Dark Shadows when it was originally on. She still likes the show but she now views it in a campy way. She did not preceive it that way when it was originally broadcast. Her daughter likes the show. I have talked to people who negatively compare the 1970s Battlestar Galactica to the new version. Someone I talked to said he now perceives the original show as cheezy. He didn't notice the cheeziness as a kid. I have noticed that many young people do not have much interest in the 1960s Star Trek. This is in contrast to the Star Wars movies from the 1970s and early 1980s. There is much less of a perception of them being dated. I first started watching Star Trek when I was 6 years old or younger. I was not alive when they were originally broadcast but I have been a huge fan since I was a child. I have talked to a woman teacher who showed the "Let That Be Your Last Battlefield" episode of Star Trek to a class she teaches. She told me that the students understood the point of the episode but they were not enthusiastic about it. When it comes to people that are teenagers or in their early 20's, I have noticed more exposure and interest in the original The Twilight Zone (which pre-dates 1960s Star Trek).
— May 11, 2012 9:07 a.m.

R.I.P. Porn Biz (and good riddance!)

There are still plenty of features still being made. Wicked Pictures has been making good features for many years and they are not relying on doing parodies of movie and TV shows. When I have gone to Erotica LA and the AVN Entertainment Expo, the Wicked Pictures booth has had good size autograph lines. Along with the women, Randy Spears has also signed at the booth. There are several companies still doing features. The Not The Bradys XXX movie revived the parody genre and there have been a whole bunch of other parodies of TV shows and movies that have come after it. Most men do not like to have much story in a porn movie unless they are watching a parody movie. You have a female sensibility when it comes to porn. You are not a typical man. You like relationships and character development to be shown in porn. Most guys dislike "chick flicks" when it comes to mainstream movies. They therefore would not want to see a porn version of a "chick flick." One of your favorite porn movies is Devil in Miss Jones 2. That is a movie that is more aimed at a couples audience. I actually like many romance movies much more then most men. I like movies such as 500 Days of Summer, Notebook, Time Traveler's Wife, etc.. If people want to watch features with couple's appeal, they are still being made. The porn industry will make movies that make them money. The movies that bother you would not be made unless people bought them. Instead of blaming the companies, you should criticize the public that is buying and renting the movies you dislike. You dislike fratboy humor. Jim Powers was a member of a fraternity and I know how you dislike his movies. SS Crompton and I have laughed at the dialogue in his movies. I dislike the Jackass movies and yet many people think they are funny. I don't see the humor value in seeing someone physically hurt. People could imitate what they see in the Jackass movies and TV series and yet I don't see you complain about Jackass. It isn't just adults who watch Jackass, there are children that watch it as well. I was never enthused about the Three Stooges either but I will take it over Jackass any day. At least with the Three Stooges, you know it is acting going on. You glorify the 1970's porn and yet there are many rape scenes in those movies then now. I have been emailing companies and letting know about their movies being pirated on tube sites. I'm doing my part to fight piracy.
— February 26, 2010 11:56 a.m.

Friday ‘Round Town, plus Land of the Lost, Pink Floyd in San Diego, Art Around Adams Schedule, Late Night TV Music, more

I'm surprised by your criticism of William Shatner. You have spoken so highly of Shatner's acting in the Thriller TV series. I think Shatner did his best Star Trek acting during the first season of the show. His acting could be quite different, depending on the episode. I think Harlan Ellison's The City on the Edge of Forever has one of William Shatner's best acting jobs. With the exception of Richard Matheson's The Enemy Within (during which Shatner plays the good and evil Captain Kirk), his acting is way more toned during the first year. I have noticed his haltering acting style is something he does when speaks outside of acting as well. In a book that Shatner wrote, he said that the reason why he halters when he speaks, is that he is pausing to remember his lines. Shatner says that he would deliberately overact to make silly situations seem more real. He has written about his acting in The World of Suzie Wong play. Shatner claims that when he overacted, the audience got more in to the play. I think the "The Musician" is one the weaker episodes of the first 2 seasons of land of the Lost. I think a flaw of the 2nd season is that Chaka and his ape people got used too much. They were being used too much for comic relief. I like Chaka but I prefered it when he was potrayed in a more serious way. Most of the famous science fiction writers were gone during the 2nd season. Even though the 2nd was uneven, the show still had a signicant number of good episodes. I'm glad you started watching the shows before the 3rd season. Many land of the Lost fans are very critical of the 3rd season. If you just had the 3rd season to go on, this would reinforce your negative opinion of the show. I would recommend you see the first season, this is when the show was at it's best.
— June 5, 2009 11:11 a.m.