Pokémon GO Survival Guide!

Pokémon GO got released to the public last week.  If you saw what seemed like more people than usual walking around with their cell phones out looking down at the screen, there's a go chance they were trying to catch 'em all.  The game uses the phone's GPS and real world locations to play.  You go to landmarks to get items or battle in Pokémon gyms and the creatures pop up all over the place.  My wife snagged three Pokémon in a McDonald's drive thru.  The game is a lot of fun, but it makes you get out in the real world, so you have to be careful.

Here's a few tips for you.  Yes, many of these should be obvious, but a reminder never hurts.

People's property is their property.  The game tells you there's Squirtle nearby: YAY!  But its in someone's back yard: uh oh.  As tempting as it may be, it not a good idea to go roming through other people's yards and such in your hunts.  That person might be completely cool with what you're doing, but the neighbors might get nervous.  Best case is you get to explain the game to new person, possibly a police officer.  Worst case: crazy neighbor person comes out with shotgun.  Fortunately, the radius in the game for catching Pokémon is pretty wide so if a critter is in someone's back yard, you'll probably be about to snag it from the sidewalk.

When going out at night to play the game, remember that you are going out at night.  Wear some bright colors.  And like the song says: nothing good happens after 2 AM.  That guy on the corner might not be out hunting for a Zubat.

Look where you're going!  Seriously.  A little situational awareness goes a long way.  There's already been people bumping into each other and running into walls.

Go out in groups!  While this is a good safety tip, it also makes the game a lot more fun.  Go out as a family.  Find a buddy.  We hit a Pokéstop (place to get items in the game) at a park over the weekend.  There were about a dozen of us there playing the game.  Most everyone had a buddy with them.  Everyone was friendly and having a great time.  It was a blast.  On the flip side there's been a case of criminals staking out Pokéstops waiting for players who are out by themselves to rob them.  This gets back to being aware of your surroundings.  Also traveling in groups does cut down on the chances of being confronted by a potential mugger or worse.

Remember your common sense.  Its a neat idea, the thought of going on an adventure to play this game.  But if you're out somewhere and thinking about checking a spot that may not be safe.  Remember, its just a game and you'll have other chances to snag that particular Pokémon.

All that said, I think the game is really great.  There are a few risks involved, but there's always a risk when heading out your front door.  The fun and exercise you'll get out of playing the game do outweight those risks.  So head out, have fun, and be safe!

Captain America: Civil War REVIEW

For those of you who have followed me for a while, you know I think the CIVIL WAR comic book was horribly written and one of the worst things Marvel ever put out.  Why that comic has gotten any praise at all from comic book fans baffles me.  It utterly screwed up the dynamic of the Marvel trinity.  It had main characters acting horribly out of character.  And the fall out from it was ridiculous.

Need a quick overview of the book, watch this.

Ok, got all that?  Cool.  Now on to the review.


Everything the comic book did wrong, the movie did right.  The book had Cap and Tony at each others' throats over a difference of opinion about government oversight on superheroes.  That element is indeed at play in the movie, but there is so much more at play here.

This is a revenge story, and a really good one.  All these little twists keep going to bring about the ultimate result of the movie.  The fanboys who love the comic have been wanting to see Captain America and Ironman kick the ever-lovin' crap out of each other, and guess what, that's exactly what the main villain wants too.  

Let that sink in for a moment, you people who wanted to see tension between these characters and wanted them to beat each other up.  

Tons of manipulation, all these little moments that seem to be a bit pointless in the film, come together to form this nasty web that catches our heroes.  And the great thing here is that it allows each of the characters to stay true to themselves and we don't have idiotic things like Cap acting like a zealot and Tony recruiting super villains after all the heroes realize he's being a douche.

In fact, Tony is the main target of the manipulation.  I have to wonder if there's scenes that had to get cut revealing the mother of the slain college student was a plant working for Zemo and that the explosion early in the film was somehow rigged.  That isn't crucial to the film, as it could just be our villain waiting for the perfect opportunity to spring his trap.  He's a patient one.

So, we have an excellent plot that greatly improved the dreck that was the comic.  On to the movie itself.

The performances were great top to bottom.  There's been a lot of buzz about Spidey and Black Panther, and how great they were, and its warranted.  Everyone had these wonderfully juicy moments, and it all meshed together so nicely.  It's a very well balanced script, and while we have a dozen superheroes running around its clear that this is a Captain America film.  That's hard because Robert Downey Jr. is always amazing as Tony Stark, but Chris Evans holds his own so well as the stanch moral rock of the movie.  

Here's the hing about Captain America: he's right.  He's the character that is when given all the possible choices is always going to make the one that's going to help as many people as possible.  So, when asked if you're TeamCap or Teamfillintheblank, if your answer isn't TeamCap then you need to probably reconsider your position.  And Evans absolutely nails it without coming off holier-than-thou.

My only problem with the movie is how some of the fight scenes were shot.  I hate shakey camera work and I hate quick action cuts.  That's how sloppy fight choreography gets covered up and it doesn't look like these scenes were sloppy fight choreography.  Let me see the moves and not risk motion sickness, please!

There was plenty of funny bits to keep folks entertained, which is good.  There's a lot of really heavy and dark stuff going on in this story.  Marvel knows when to lighten the mood without coming off cheesy or cheapening the story.  They're also a bit self aware, especially in regards to Marissa Tomei who many people have said is way too young and too hot to play Aunt May.

The trailers for this movie were really misleading on the lot of points.  Lines were cherry picked to make it seem like Tony and Cap were really not liking each other at all.  They left me wondering how two people who are indeed friends could have that much animosity over a difference of opinion on an issue that's pretty much just political.  Once everything gets put in context with the movie it makes so much more sense.  And for those who say, well there was that animosty there back in the first Avengers movie, you're refering to scenes in which all the characters were at each others throats due to the Mind Gem being in the room, so stop, you're embarrassing yourselves.

Bottom line: I went into this movie with a lot of apprehension, and am now releaved that that Marvel managed to make this story happen without it being the utter trainwreck that the comic was and having all of these heroes coming out of it with us as viewers still being able to see them as heroes.  Did the villain win here?  Some may think so, but the final scenes in the film let us know that when the time comes, the Avengers will assemble once more. 


That's right, issue 3 is finally here and I'll be shipping copies out this week.  For ordering information e-mail me at d.cnozz@gmail.com 

Bad nerd!

Hello, my name is Marty, and I am a bad nerd.

This not a good time to be a bad nerd.  There's all these nerdy things all about us in various media.  I have many nerd friends (people I only know on the internet still count as friends!), and they're all very excited.  I can't go on much of any social media without seeing something about recent nerd movies/TV shows/ whatever or one of the same coming out this year.

And I just don't care.

And this is troubling to me!  I'm not trying to be Hipster Nozz over here!  I wish I was excited about all these things that're coming out!  Aside from the Marvel Netflix stuff and some of the comics I read nothing is really getting me stoked.  Its really depressing.  Not totally terrible of course.  I still have The Walking Dead comic, and a lot of the Marvel stuff since the re-launch has been a lot of fun.

However, much of what a lot of people seem to be excited about doesn't appeal to me.  And its weird in that much of it has gotten so mainstream that the people I know who aren't really part of the "nerdcore" see it, like it, and think of me.  "Marty must be really excited by all of this!"

And I'm not.  Let's review my bad nerd credentials.

* I hate the new STAR WARS  movie.  I really do.  Its not a bad movie.  Its very well done.  I wasn't terribly excited about going to see it.  The Missus wanted to check it out, so we went.  If you haven't seen it yet I'm going to dance around a spoiler as best I can.

If a fictional character that I have loved since childhood, one that was the epitome of cool for me as a kid, and my favorite thing in that entire fictional universe, gets horribly murdered in a film, I'M NOT GOING TO LIKE THAT FILM!!!  That's the only thing I think of in regards to that movie.  All the other stuff has just become a grey haze to me because of that one part.  I'm seriously to the point where I want nothing to do with STAR WARS because of that one thing.

There's no logic behind it.  Its purely, 100% emotionalism.  The last thing that really had me vested in the franchise got bumped off, and with that I've out grown STAR WARS.

* I hate THE DARK KNIGHT.  This is not news to those who have followed me for a while.  The movie that a lot of people hail as the most amazing Batman movie ever, I rank it right down with BATMAN AND ROBIN.  It was a great Joker movie, but made Batman out to be a two-fisted moron with Morgan freeman there to do all the heavy thinking for him.  I found it just hard to watch.

And unfortunately it started a trend with Warner brothers to which ever Superman got very grim and gritty.  MAN OF STEEL  looked like something I needed to keep my children away from, and like the brilliant writer Greg Rucka put it "Any Superman movie that you can't take your kids to isn't a good Superman movie."

So, no I'm not excited at all for the SUPERMAN VS BATMAN movie.  Ben Affleck does look like he'll make a great Batman, but I have no interest in a movie which Martha Kent tells Clark he doesn't owe the world a thing.  In these movies, Ma and Pa Kent are the worst parents ever.  And honestly, I don't feel like going to a movie to watch two superheroes I like beat each other up.  Go fight a villain.  You've both got plenty of them.

Which brings us to...

* CIVIL WAR.  Damn it all anyways.  Why?  Why on earth do people praise that comic?  Its terribly written.  The artwork is really nice, but the book portrays Captain America as being a freaking nut and not much better than the Punisher.  And ever since then Ironman has been a almost a villain with no one really trusting him.  Now, we've had a reboot and Ironman is really awesome again!  But now there's going to be another CIVIL WAR comic which pits Ironman against Captain Marvel.  Yes, the Captain Marvel that's going to be getting her own movie in a couple years.  We couldn't go six months since SECRET WAR in which everyone got along and fought bad guys?

Oh and the movie?

OK, let's take two characters that we've been made to like and put them against each other.  And that last scene with Cap and Bucky being the crap out of Ironman was disturbing.  They looked like a couple of bullies.  This may well be the first movie that Marvel studios puts out that I full on avoid.

* Speaking of Marvel movies: screw DEADPOOL.  I hate that character.  I'm annoyed by his rabid fandom.  I'm absolutely stunned that a movie actually got off the ground and fully expect this thing to flop, because I think more people will just illegally download from somewhere instead of shelling out the bucks to go see it.

* SUICIDE SQUAD.  Yeah, concerning that: I've taken all of my f--ks and put them in a time capsule which is not to be unearthed until well after I'm dead because i won't be giving any of them.

Fortunately there's still so good nerdy TV for me to enjoy.  I really wish LEGENDS OF TOMORROW was going to be on on a night that I won't get home until after its over, but those are the breaks.

There's all these things out there that people are going to be buzzing about.  It'll likely come up at shows when I'm trying to sell my comic, and I'll smile uncomfortably and make some excuse about not finding time to go see it, but I'll catch it of DVD, and hey, let's talk about my book.

Its very frustrating.  I want to enjoy these things, but its just all so wrong to me.  I'm having people who didn't start out nearly as nerdy as me knowing a lot more about some of this stuff than I do.  I've gotten pretty good at smiling and shrugging my shoulders over it.

I will say this, its kinda tough when the stuff everyone's so excited about bums you out.