6mm-Minis is Maksim-Smelchak's blog to discuss gaming, miniatures, books, movies, food, Israel, Judaism, life in general and other funny crud. My favorite scale of miniatures is 6mm, which is also called 1/285 or 1/300 scale. I enjoy many different kinds of games including ancients, Napoleonics, WWI, WWII, the Arab-Israeli conflict, Car Wars AKA Autoduel (a sort of crash'n'derby automobile combat game), 6mm Godzilla AKA Kaiju games, and science fiction games. I'm open to everything though!

Monday, July 31, 2006

MINI WARGAMING: Panzerblitz Comes To Miniatures (31 July 2006)!

Hi Everyone,

I saw this news tidbit over at TMP and thought it worthy of sharing especially considering the local ASL community:

New Website: PanzerBlitz for Miniatures


And here's a link to the site:


Very cool!

Have a great Monday!


Labels: ,

Sunday, July 30, 2006

GAMING NEWS: Necronopoly? And More! (29 July 2006)

Hi Everyone,

I managed to stop by A-1 Comics in Roseville yesterday and met a few friends for some gaming...

A-1 Comics link:


The following were present:
- Chris
- Dave
- Jason
- Kimbo
- Maksim (me!)

I was last there and missed out on a few games including this amusing spawn of Cthulhu and Monopoly (no kidding):



I don't remember who won (Code for "Kimbo won!" Mazel Tov, Kimbo!), but I did get to see Jason go insane and turn into a ghoul. Very amusing. And Dave got eaten by an Elder force so it couldn't have been all bad.

Here's mighty Kimbo's summation of the game:

An obvious take off on Monopoly. This is a simple "roll and move" game that might be a bit of fun for the fan of the Cthulhu Mythos. Instead of money, the currency of the game is sanity, and it goes away fast! The "winner" is the last player to have any sanity left. (I call this person the "Last loser".) You can buy property in this game (using Sanity of course) but there is no trading of properties, no houses or hotels to build. The game is all about trying to preserve the sanity you start with longer than everyone else. One advantage this game has over Monopoly is that when a player goes insane (loses all his sanity), he becomes a monster in the game (a cultist) and begins working against the remaining players. A cultist can't "win" the game, but at least he's not sitting around waiting for the game to end...

Good for a laugh or two, but not a game to be taken seriously.

Mazel Tov again to Kimbo, the Great Old One!

El Grande


Next we played El Grande, which I have been avoiding for awhile. It gets good reviews, but I have had a very bad feeling about it, which was well vindicated during play. Dave blindsided me on the first turn and I was stuck anywhere from twenty to forty points behind all of the other players. El Grande is a basic territorial dominance game with bidding for special cards, which affect gameplay. I stuck it out (after the blindside), but the amount of backstabbing in the game (We often call it the "Kimbage factor" and I'm not sure why since Kimbo really isn't a vindictive person... guess it's just teasing.) decreased my enjoyment of the game. Or I could just be kvetching...

Flip-Tac-Toe http://www.boardgamegeek.com/game/24540

Dave must have had a screw loose because he suggested that we play a Tic-Tac-Toe game with foam "Romper Room" pieces next. The twist with Flip-Tac-Toe was that you could stack the pieces four high or move stacks. I think that I would have been more amused if we had played food fight with the pieces. I manage sneak in a quick victory on the first game and sat out the second game, which dragged out forever.

And while they spent about forty minutes FLIP-TAC-TOE'ing each other, I ran into Mike Hardy, who was working on minis. We chatted about a number of things including his Cold Navy miniatures line and game universe, which he has now sold off. For more information, check out the Cold Navy web site:

Mike Hardy is an interesting guy and one of the most consistently gnenerous gamers I've known. I originally met him at the old Hobby Workshop gaming store...

(ASIDE: I miss good ol' Machiavellian Bill, the owner of that classy joint! Bill was one f those folks you'll remember for life... like the proprietor from the KODT comic book gaming shop...)

...in the early 2000's, while he was demo'ing Reaper's CAV game. Later CAV burned him out...

(ASIDE: Reaper still has yet to come out with CAV 2... it's been something like two or three years since they last announced that it was forthcoming...)

...and I've lately caught him playing War Machine from Privateer Press. I think that War Machine is a good game, but have avoided it because I don't want to buy into another miniatures game.

Mike is probably best known for his Cold Navy miniatures line, which is very impressive. Unfortunately, the pressure of raising a family, maintaining a day job and trying to run a low profit hobby company was too much and Mike sold off the company. I wish both Mike and his successor luck in their future ventures. The miniatures and board game hobby industries are notoriously hard to break into.

KODT comic book link:


Rum & Pirates


After the FLIP-TAC-TOE carnage ended (They stopped "flipping" each other...), we proceeded to play a game that I can never quite get the hang of, Rum & Pirates. What seems like a simple five turn pirate-themed version of Candyland and the old TSR Fantasy Forest has some very deceptive bidding game mechanics, which saw me end in a dead heat for last place again. My friend, Dick Mitchell, has mentioned that I must have lost my mojo. I'm starting to think that he may be right. I'd like to give Rum & Pirates another go or so... it has promise.

And because I haven't posted any shots of "gratuitous babes" in awhile, I chose this one from the recently passed Comicon comic book convention:


Look, Mom! It's Latina Wonder Woman!

I have to admit that most folks who attend conventions of any type in costume scare me, but every now and then someone shows up in a Spandex bodysuit who should actually be allowed to wear one, and this person certainly qualifies. She's also a nice change of pace for my poor weary eyes... so tired from looking at "over and underweight nerd groupies with anime neon bright hairdoos"... try saying that five times quickly.

On the other hand, someone probably ought to feed her. I'm sure that that's nothing a little lox and chicken soup with "Super Schmaltz" can't fix...



Have a great Sunday!


Labels: , , , , ,

Sunday, July 23, 2006

MINI WARGAMING: The Weekend Wrap Up In Sacto Gaming (22-23 July, 2006)!

Hi Everyone,

This was quite a weekend of gaming, plenty of events.

Vynnie, a local gamer, well known for his generosity and a beautifully designed miniatures web site (link to his site shown below) was among the game hosts this past weekend.

Saturday was full of gaming events...


Whether from the Sacto Board Gamers at the Arden Dimick Public Library...


You can see several well known gamers in the above photo (photo taken from the Sacto Boardgamers web site) ... among them Phil the "Mighty" and Brian the "Brain."

Kevin Ellingston was able to attend this event and noted the games played here:


I have posted a list on BoardGameGeek recapping the games that were played on July 22 at the Arden Dimick Library. Since I did not arrive until 2 p.m., I suspect there may have been a game or two that were played that I did not get a record of. If you attended and played a game that is not on the list, I would appreciate it if you would add it.


The MWSS Board / Mini Gamers at Fair Oaks Public Library...

The above photo is of Rob "Mako" Kent, a local wargamer with an intense interest in aerial wargames and Don Delis, who hosted a WWII Pacific wargame.


MWSS also had guests from the Bay Area EBAG Club:

The EBAG guys are certainly a little strange, but are always likeable!

Why is it that so many folks with Scooby Doo T-shirts seem to resemble Shaggy?


MWSS hosted three mini games this past weekend:

- A western "gunsmoke" game (homebrew rules) designed and hosted by the always charismatic Joe Bianchi.

- A WWII Pacific game (Flames of War rules) featuring Ozzies fighting the Japanese in the deep jungle hosted by the inscrutable Don Delis.

- A DBM game featuring the Gauls vs. the Romans hosted by the ever magnanimous Brad.

I attended this event and took some photos, which can be found here:



Or the local gamers that Vynnie hosted at his place...

In the above photo, a might Klingon and Orion fleet head off to deal some "hurt" to the do-gooders of the Federation. If nothing else, the Klingons have thick heads of hair, which is more than many Federation captains can lay claim to...


I also attended this event and posted some photos here:


We played the popular Starfleet Battles remake Federation Cammander and had a good time. FC is a big improvement over the rules and tables heavy SFB.


Of course, as often as not, it's the company that makes the game and not the other way around.


And Sunday also saw a number of games hosted including some games of ASL (Advanced Squad Leader), a classic war game of much renown.



And I had a great time everywhere I headed this past weekend!

Thanks to all, whether hosts, players or otherwise!


Labels: , , , , , , , , ,

GAMING NEWS: The Secret of A-1 Alchemy (7-19-2006)!

Hi Everyone,

This past Wednesday Dick, Kimbo and I got together at A-1 Comics on Sunrise (as we do almost every week) and played a game... it was a longer game so we only got that game in. Dave Story managed to show up for a little, but had to leave later.

The game we played was:

Ars Mysteriorum


And we had a good time.

The game reminded me in many ways of other card-drafting, resource bidding and set-building games such as Thurn & Taxi or Ticket To Ride, but it added a lot of complication to the "card" theme. Each turn had eight parts and the biggest gambit was in how you used your special cards called "mysteries." Unfortunately, a good number of the special cards were worded poorly or were only good when used in such a way as they disadvantaged the user as much as his opponents. I'm not a big proponents of games where I have a choice of hosing myself or hosing myself.

Most of all, the biggest shortcoming of the game was the length it took to play... We started early in the evening (probably around 5:00pm) and didn't end until late in the evening (almost 9:00pm). While I had a good time thanks to Dick and Kimbo, I felt that the playing the game wasn't a good use of my limited gaming time. I get alot more out of other games in the same amount of time.

Oh, and Mazel Tov to Dick on his victory! Well played!

And that remined me of another "alchemy" themed game that I have in my collection:



I'll have to bring Theophrastus to the next meet this upcoming Wednesday. It has many of the same game mechanics but the special cards are better designed and the set collecting is more dynamic. The sense of background and story is also greater with Theophrastus than Ars Mysteriorum.

And although it will sound silly, all of the apprentice pawns in Ars Mysteriorum resembled lawn gnomes and that kept me from taking the game very seriously.

Who wouldn't prefer the mortar and pestle of Theophrastus to the lawn gnomes of Ars Mysteriorum?

Oh, and if you really have a thing for gnomes, check out this site:


And if you're one of those "political activist" types, help the poor oppressed garden gnomes here:


Bottom line: I wouldn't recommend Ars Mysteriorum. I would recommend Theophrastus.

Have a great day!


Notes regarding photos / pictures: These are not all my images. I am using various images from around the web, mostly from public sources and/or private sources used with permission. I have tried to include only images under public domain, creative commons, or fair use. If I have inadvertently violated any copyrights, please inform me and I will remove your image/s (if it is indeed an infringement).

Labels: , ,

Thursday, July 20, 2006

HUMOUR: Thought You Couldn't Dance?

.Hi Guys,

If you thought you couldn't dance... then you've been "moded"...

This guy, Matt, NOT only can't dance, BUT he can't dance... with style!

Check out his video here:


And more about him here:


I now feel much better about all the flailing I did in the 1980s... long live Pat Benetar!


Have a nice Thursday!


Kudos to Barcepundit on whose blog where I found this crazy clip:




FUN VIDEOS: Nerdfest Part-2 "Star Trek vs. Star Wars"

Star Trek vs. Star Wars

Hi Guys,

I enjoyed this one. Classic...

Check out these two links as well...

One article by one of my favorite sci-fi authors, David Brin, popular for the Uplift series:

And another site that absolutely cracks me up:

Have a great Thursday!


Notes regarding photos / pictures / videos: These are not all my images and videos. I am using various images and videos from around the web, mostly from public sources and/or private sources used with permission. I have tried to include only images and videos under public domain, creative commons, or fair use. If I have inadvertently violated any copyrights, please inform me and I will remove your image/s (if it is indeed an infringement).

Labels: , , ,

FUN VIDEOS: Nerdfest Part-1 "Altered Eternity: Star Wars vs. Star Trek"

Altered Eternity: Star Wars vs. Star Trek

Hi Guys,

I've been experimenting with adding videos to the ol' blog. Here's my first go at it...

I enjoyed this clip... Hope you do too...


Notes regarding photos / pictures / videos: These are not all my images and videos. I am using various images and videos from around the web, mostly from public sources and/or private sources used with permission. I have tried to include only images and videos under public domain, creative commons, or fair use. If I have inadvertently violated any copyrights, please inform me and I will remove your image/s (if it is indeed an infringement).

Labels: , , ,

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

MINI WARGAMING: 6mm ACW Fire & Fury Basing Article!

.Hi Guys,

I came across this the other day ago and enjoyed it enough to share...



And I found it here on TMP:


Very cool work!

Thanks for sharing, Ssendam!


Labels: , ,

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

HUMOUR: New "Offensive" Rocket?

Hi Guys,

With all the rockets flying around these days, I thought I'd share the latest in a long line of rockets:


And the standing joke is:

"Add one mother-in-law and fire away!"

If only the crazies of the world were firing these instead of the explosive ones lined with rat poison. I think I could tolerate a few of these landing on my "favorite" politicians' cars or homes (...assuming they didn't actually hurt anyone).

Or even better yet, if we got American "4th of July" rockets or American anthem "Rocket's red glare" instead of "that other kind."

And... both the photo and rocket are real! Go figure!



Have a great day and don't step on #2 in your quest to become #1!



MINI WARGAMING: 6mm Zombies?


TOP: Norrmeister's 6mm Irregular "Riot Pack" zombies!

Hi Guys,

I recently came across a post on TMP for 6mm zombies... COOL!

Link to TMP post:

And someone was generous enough to post pics of the "Irregular Riot" set that he is using for zombies:

Thanks, Norrmeister!

Oh, and a link to Irregular Miniatures:

Have a great Tuesday!


Notes regarding photos / pictures / videos: These are not all my images and videos. I am using various images and videos from around the web, mostly from public sources and/or private sources used with permission. I have tried to include only images and videos under public domain, creative commons, or fair use. If I have inadvertently violated any copyrights, please inform me and I will remove your image/s (if it is indeed an infringement).

Labels: , , , , , ,

Monday, July 17, 2006

HASBARA: Maksim's Take On the Israel-Hezbollah War...


Hi Guys,

I've been getting an immense amount of correspondence about the current Israel-Hezbollah War and it's moved me to say my peace here at my blog. While I want to keep the focus of my blog on gaming, I will, on occasion, speak about politics, especially in regard to the Middle East, which I feel is crucial to the progress of civilization.

I added an array of links to Israeli/Jewish web sites for folks to peruse who are interested.

First of all, if I could recommend just one article to read about the current conflict, I would recommend this one from Treppenwitz:


A short caption from his article:

Just as every person who had ever rescued that bully from admitting defeat helped create the cowardly brute I saw that evening in the bar, every well-intentioned power that has ever stepped in and negotiated a ceasefire for an Arab aggressor has helped create the monsters we see around us today.

President Lahoud of Lebanon, a big Hezbollah supporter and a close ally of Syria, has been shrieking non-stop to the UN Security Council for the past two days to get them to force Israel into a cease fire.

I highly recommend reading the whole article.

What Treppenwitz has done is capture the totality of the Arab-Israeli conflict, which goes something like this:

1. Arabs incite and instigate through terrorism, sabre rattling and indiscriminate murder.
2. Israel uses "strong language," but fails to reply in force.
3. Arabs increase the level of violence until Israel gets really angry; angry enough to do something about it.
4. Wars breaks out between the Arabs and the Israelis.
5. The Arabs are defeated militarily on the battlefield by Israel.
6. The "world," through the auspices of the United Nations and other "international organizations" steps in, nullifies the Israeli victory, and turns every Arab military defeat into a political draw.
7. The cycle repeats.

Now, I don't beleive in the hogwash about a "cycle of violence," unless it's imposed from the outside as in this case. Normally, when a fight breaks out, whether on a school playground or between nations as in W.W.II, someone takes a beating and learns a lesson... even if only in the short term. And it takes the vigilance of a just victor to make sure that the bully learns his lesson. And...

That's what needs to happen in this conflict. Both Hezbollah and Hamas need to take a full beating... not a few punches and then have "international organizations" step in to stop the fight. Both Hezbollah, Hamas and their masters in Syria, Iran and elsewhere have lessons to learn and we do the Arab world no favors if we hold Israel's hand. The Arab people, and Muslims in general, deserve better than the tyrannies they now suffer under...


I have a few more recommendations...

If you really want an easy way to get a toe hold on what's going on in the Middle East, I can do no better than to recommend that you become a fan of The Dry Bones comic strip. Yaakov Kirschen has been writing it for years and it has been revered by both Arabs and Israelis for at least as long. I love him, some of the most inciteful humor I've ever read:


I took another comic strip from Cox & Forkum, political cartoonists extraordinaire...


I'm also a huge fan of Abba Gav, one of the most astute bloggers out of Israel... also one of the funniest.


And lastly, since the Treppenwitz article mentions a Marine in bad standing, I wanted to find a post that more accurately represents the United States Marine Corps as one of the finest instituions I have ever had the privilege to serve with (I was United States Air Force, but I served alongside Marines at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba). I also just met a Marine this past Saturday at Great Escape Games... a talented miniatures painter named Vlad. Here's a link to a Marine that is aware of the situation that both Israel and the greater world is in:



I don't feel that all Arabs are bad, evil or anything of the sort. In fact, I feel that the Arab world has an imense potential that hasn't been met due to the tyrannies they live under. I don't ignore the US role in some of those tyrannic governments, but at the same time I can also acknowledge the role of the former USSR and even the Arab (...and Persian for that matter) countries' responsibilities for the horrible state that they're in.

Playing the blame game doesn't solve problems, it exasperates them. It's time to do something about them. Terrorism is a plague; I wouldn't wish it on anyone.

If I could wish one thing for the Arabs, it would for the average Arab Joe (...or I guess, Muhammed) to be able to live in peace, raise his or her children with liberty & freedom, and enjoy the many privileges that citizens in the West can under more progressive governments and the mantle of Western civilization. I would also wish justice upon the men that behead their fellow countrymen, coreligionists, foreign journalists, foreign aid workers, the Red Cross, and others.

And, make no mistake, the current conflict isn't just between Israel & Hezbollah or Israel & Hamas, it is a war of memes, that is to say of ideas and cultures. The true war is between tyranny and freedom as symbolized by Jihadi Islam and Western democracies. In the choice between those competing ideas, I know which one I would choose any day of the week.

I truly hope that this conflict will end soon, and with minimal damage to the beautiful country of Lebanon... but not without seeing justice done.


Notes regarding photos / pictures / videos: These are not all my images and videos. I am using various images and videos from around the web, mostly from public sources and/or private sources used with permission. I have tried to include only images and videos under public domain, creative commons, or fair use. If I have inadvertently violated any copyrights, please inform me and I will remove your image/s (if it is indeed an infringement).

Labels: , ,

MINI WARGAMING: "Wings At War" Gone Wild!

Hi Guys,

The Wings At War guys have gone wild... and launched a new site for air wargamers.

I haven't been over it in depth, but I am impressed with what they have done.

You can find their site here:


Have a great day!


Sunday, July 16, 2006

MINI WARGAMING: 6mm Roman Seas!

Hi Guys,

Dick and I got together yesterday (Saturday, 15 July 2006) and gave GMT's War Galley a whirl (see previous post)...

It was fun and reminded me of the newer 6mm ancients naval game, Roman Seas, out from Hotz Artwork:


Roman Seas also has a Yahoo Discussion E-group here:


Eric Hotz also sells felt gaming mats, Western paper buildings and other goodies.


Roman Seas ships are paper models and can be printed out in a variety of scales including 6mm and 15mm (pictured above). 6mm seems to be a better scale for space usage, but I'm definitely a biased source...

Please check out the Roman Seas web site for more information and photos.

And I always recommend checking out my friend Peter Berry's site for 6mm figures of all sorts of historical flavors:



Labels: , ,

MINI WARGAMING: New E-A Photobucket Galleries...

Hi Guys,

I thought I'd share some links for some miniatures photo galleries from two Epic-Armageddon miniatures enthusiasts...


C. has been working on some terrain boards among his other projects.

I really like his use of manufactured packaging as 6mm sci-fi structures:

Please check out his link for more photos of his amazing miniatures projects.


And the later Necron efforts of PipBoy:

PipBoy does amazing work. The below photo is of some Necron Warriors he converted using DRM's Andrayada figures:

And here's some photos of his Necron Destroyers using plastic 28mm Necron Scarab bitz converted with DRM Andrayada torsos:

He has much more on his blog if you're interested in taking a gander...

And DRM Miniatures can be found and purchased here:


On a side note, I was able to get together with Dick M. yesterday and we played a few games:

- War Galley from GMT Games...

Link here:

War Galley was a bit complicated. Dick and I hadn't quite mastered the game mechanics when we decided to close out the game and head out for lunch... it was really nice though to see all of those beautiful ancients ships heading for a rumble on the seas...

- Comand & Colours: Ancients also from GMT Games...

Link here:

We played a Hannibal vs. Scipio scenario and Dick severely trounced me two games in a row...

Mazel Tov, Dick!

I picture Kimbo and Mike O'Brien smiling somewhere!

We also played a game of Settlers of Canaan from Cactus Games, an old favorite of mine...

Link here:


Have a great Sunday!


Notes regarding photos / pictures / videos: These are not all my images and videos. I am using various images and videos from around the web, mostly from public sources and/or private sources used with permission. I have tried to include only images and videos under public domain, creative commons, or fair use. If I have inadvertently violated any copyrights, please inform me and I will remove your image/s (if it is indeed an infringement).

Labels: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

PERSONAL NEWS: Mazel Tov, Elle & Vince!


Hi Everyone,

Well, as many of you know, my sister got married this past Sunday and it was wonderful... I'm very happy for her, my new brother in law and their five children. I had a great time and while they kept the event small (I don't think there were more than about 30 to 40 guests), it was nice and cozy. I saw many of my cousins whom I hadn't seen in ages.

It was a hot day (easily over the 100 degrees Fahrenheit range...) and I opted to take my suit jacket off... someone snapped a photo of me:

One of my jobs was to pick up and later drop off one of the guests, an old family friend, Dale. It was the first time I'd seen him for ages and probably the first time we really sat down and chatted as adults. I never realized that Dale was a WWII veteran... he flew B-26s and A-26s in the ETO (European Theatre of Operations). It's amazing how little we sometimes know about our neighbors. We had a long chat about WWII, the Martin B-26 Marauder and other topics of interest on the way to the wedding and back.

Dale's a tough old man and has had the same girlfriend for over fifty years... wow! That's something anyone can respect.

The ceremony and reception were held at the Oak Leigh Wedding Center, which is really a nice out of the way site. You can learn more about it here:


And the photographers were wonderful. I highly recommend them. I've known the Bannish family for years, consumate professionals and extremely kind people. Their web site is here:


And I took a ton of photos with my little digital camera, which I'm sharing on my Photobucket site so that everyone from the wedding can have access to them (...and my friends and blog readers!). The photos I took are here:


One last shot of my new nephew-in-law, Austin... aren't kids crazy?

Have a great day!


Labels: , ,

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

PERSONAL NEWS: Quick Maksim Update #2 (11 July 2006)...

Hi Guys,


I'm still around... working on several new posts:

- Yehuda game meme post.
- Sister's wedding photos post.
- Microarmor ruleset review for Tas.
- A few new joke posts.
- ConQuest SF post.
- Possible movie review of "Munich"... or maybe not.
- Post about new Lebanese Armor "Blue Steel" book...
- Announcement of new local 28mm Westerns miniatures company...
- Announcement of new Firefly Games product "A Faery's Tale"...
- A few book reviews...


I'm really looking froward to this week's "Wednesday Gamer's Night Out" at A-1 Comics on Sunrise. It will be Dick Mitchell's first night back ina while and I've missed him... can't get enough good friends like him. And it sounds like some of the rest of the "local posse" are getting jazzed as well... hope to see Kimbo and Dave Story among others...

Dick put up a new site for a local gaming club he runs:


Which also has a free Yahoo E-group:



And the good-looking redhead, who I met this past Saturday, and I are getting along just fine.... ran into her again yesterday and thoroughly enjoyed the company. It's wonderful when a good-looking woman takes a visible interest in you.

And, I'm getting close to a new State job so that's nice as well.


Have a great day!


Labels: , ,

Sunday, July 09, 2006

FILMS: "NEUTER MAN" Comes To a Theatre Near You!


Hi Everyone,

Well, I went out Sunday afternoon (9 July 2006) with my friends Mike and Donna to see the new film Superman Returns and I was...


I'd read some newspaper, magazine and blog articles before going witht he conclusion that the Superman was politically correct, but I was skeptical that it was true and sometimes negatively publicity is overhyped to the Nth degree, BUT...

In this case, the negative hype was... all too true.

For those of you who might not be familiar with the superhero genre, superheroes are mythical hero figures that became popularized in comic books and newspapers in the beginning of the twentieth century. The genre has come a long way from its origins and become very much an entertainment staple as well as a mainstream interest.

Superman, one of the first and longest enduring superheroes has come a long way from a hero drawn by two Jewish comic book artists on their mother's breadboards in the 1930s. For more about Superman's Jewish origins and the many Jewish references and allusions in the Superman series, check out these links:




And the film didn't just suffer from negative hype and a politically correct makeover, it's worst feature was a really lame storyline, which is where I was inspired to come up with my nickname, "NEUTER MAN" for Superman Returns...

The new Superman doesn't get to "hook up" with Lois Lane.

Yes, that's right. Lois Lane has a new hubby and baby living outside of wedlock because Superman had to go on a "soul searching" trip with Lamas, llamas and undoubtedly yaks. No kidding. Not only that, but Lois is winning a Pulitzer Prize for writing an article called "Why the World Doesn't Need Superman." Go figure.

*** What kind of a twentieth century monologue is that? Remember when the hero got to "hook up" with the damsel in distress and live happily ever after? ***

Superman can't even light a match for Lois Lane in Superman Returns. I miss the days when Superman could spend "quality time" with beautiful women like the one in the following photo... or, at least, fight crime together.

Now, the acting wasn't too bad. Superman was appropriately hunky (see photo):

And Lois, played by Kate Boswell was pretty (although Kate should stay a blond)...

Without giving away too much off the story, I'd like to comment that it's really sad when Kevin Spacey, who played Lex Luthor, is upstaged by two Pomeranians (poofy dogs). Enough said.

And not only does Superman "not get the girl," but he doesn't even get to fight crime anymore either. He's only allowed to rescue folks from disasters... the ACLU might sue him if he denied criminals their "rights." The only antagonist allowed in the film is Lex Luthor (and goons), who as I previously mentioned was upstaged by Pomeranians. The film mentions that the reason that Lex Luthor gets out of jail is because Superman fails to make a court appearance as the "star" witness during Lex's time in court... how lame is that?

At one point in the film, Superman... almost fights crime, when the usual museum heist occurs. High-tech criminals set up a Gatling gun on a roof and predictably blow up cop cars Terminator style until Superman shows up to deflect bullets off his "Man of Steel" chest and stuns the criminals into dumbfounded submission with his good looks alone (no punches necessary). And while two donut-ridden security guards are rescued when Superman stops the evil Gatling gun (...mustn't depict actual criminals, people, as villains... excepting Lex of course), we never see the criminals committing a crime other than a possible breaking or entering and illegal weapons possession charges. I predict that Superman violated their civil rights and that they'll get off scot-free when Superman fails to appear in court... again. And, AGAIN... very sad universe.


As a side note, if my review of Superman Returns is too disjointed for you, try this one from Isaac Schrödinger:


Or maybe these ones from Debbie Shlussel:




Perhaps, the worst of Superman's politically correct whitewash in the new film was the deletion of Superman's raison d'etre, that is to say the reason for his heroism... the old phrase: “truth, justice, and the American way”...

Which was changed to: “...truth, justice, and all that stuff.”

More about that here:


It's sad that some Hollywood film directors are so spineless that they would delete the phrase"the American way" from a famous American icon to try and curry a larger film audience from abroad.

And, unfortunately, the director of Superman Returns isn't the first and probably wont be the last to try and deflate classic American icons. That process has been going on for some time. Anyone remember Ted Turner's Captain Planet?


More about the rewriting of superhero history here:


And another article here:


And here:


And here:


On the other hand, sometimes superheroes end up in photo ops with unexpected folks:


I wanted to find a picture of Dick Cheney with a superhero for my friend Kimbo (...who bears a remarkable resemblance to Dick Cheney), but we'll have to settle for Rumsfeld.

*** See! Is this a photo of Dick Cheney incognito or Kimbo? ***

Ultimately, my advice to you, as people I like, is:

If you want to see a good superhero flick, go out and rent Sky High or The Incredibles.

This whole episode makes me feel like I did when I discovered the Tooth Fairy wasn't real... bummer.

And if you happen to know about any other myths that aren't real, don't tell me at this time, I've had enough disillusionment for the week! Let me live in bliss...


I avoided mentioning the hagiography of Superman in the film. It was very sad... something inbetween Mel Gibson's The Passion of Christ and any kooky film ever written about the Spear of Destiny. Oy, oy vay!

I give the film credit for being dedicated to the late Christopher and Dana Reeve, two real folks who stayed true to their values in a politically correct Hollywood world.

In an unrelated mention, if you get a chance, check out the classic Larry Niven short story "Man of Steel, Woman of Kleenex"... very amusing.




Labels: , ,