Midnight Ramblings II

Chaos in Print


Note: if you missed Midnight Ramblings I, then let me explain this. Once in a while, I send these long, rambling e-mails to a friend of mine, named “Nelix” in these columns. I soon began thinking “Why not publish these ramblings as columns?” So, that’s what I do.

Hey Nelix!

So, what’s up in your world? Not much new is going on in mind. I just have to tell you about my latest impulse buy. I was in Wal-Mart the other day and, as always, I was perusing the toy aisle. You will remember how I rave about my action figure collection. As always, I ended up where the Star Wars toys are. They just are the hot collectible today. I was greeted by row upon row of Episode I action figures. Right now I am a little pissed that the new assortment hasn’t made it to Canada yet, but that’s a separate issue. When it comes to my Episode I action figures, I’ve got my Obi-Wan Kenobi, my Qui-Gon Jinn and my (now ultra-rare) Darth Maul. That’s all I need. So, after some poking around, I soon found the Power of the Force action figures. These are the guys from the original trilogy. Yes, they are still making them. I was thrilled that they had a little two-pack that I’d heard about. I am talking about the Jawa and Gonk Droid two pack! You’re probably wondering what the hell a Gonk Droid is. Well, remember in Star Wars when R2-D2 and C-3P0 had been captured by the Jawas and we saw that whole menagerie of droids in their sand crawler? Well, the Gonk Droid was the little guy who looked like an upside down garbage can with legs. He had a more memorable scene in Return of the Jedi when he was on a torture rack getting his feet burned. He is more commonly referred to as a Power Droid. He’s called a Gonk Droid because “Gonk” is the only word it says. Now why the hell did I buy it? I’m still not to sure. Probably because the Gonk Droid was one of the few characters left to become an action figure, and because of that he was becoming one of the most sought-after Star Wars action figures. Plus, he is kind of cute for a box with legs. And now he’s mine!

Actually, I got this brilliant idea. When I become a famous novelist, I think I’m going to write a comic book mini-series called Star Wars: Gonk’s Adventure, all about the adventures of the Gonk Droid. I’d say (in a tounge-in-cheek kind of way) how he was really the one who blew up the second Death Star in Return of the Jedi. Let’s just say that this is my way of protesting how ever character with 2 seconds of screen time in the Star Wars universe gets a whole back story and history.

I’ve also been noticing that all these Star Wars action figures come with these CommTech chips now. I wonder what lines of dialogue are on the Jawa and Gonk Droid’s chip. Probably “Gonk” and some miscellaneous Jawa chirps. I might have to give in and get one of these chip readers. Oh, and I lied when I said that Obi-Wan, Qui-Gon and Darth Maul were all I needed. I wouldn’t mind getting Captain Panaka. I thought he was kind of cool. But, he’s in that second assortment that hasn’t made it to Canada yet! I could buy him from the Star Wars online store, but I don’t have that kind of money yet.

On a completely unrelated topic, I see that an all-new Sesame Street movie has been released to theaters! Yup, I’m talking about The Adventures of Elmo in Grouchland. While all this attention is being thrust on it, I’d like to take a moment to talk about the “other” Sesame Street movie. I’m talking about the 1985 film Sesame Street Presents Follow That Bird. Now that I think about it, the plot is kind of dark for Sesame Street. In it, a social worker decides that Big Bird might be happier with “his own kind,” so she takes Big Bird away from Sesame Street and puts him in a foster home. Big Bird doesn’t like the foster home that much, so he goes on a cross-country odyssey to get back to Sesame Street. And, of course, the whole cast of Sesame Street regulars goes off in search of Big Bird. This was 1985, so in the Sesame Street Universe there was no Elmo yet, and everyone still thought that Mr. Snuffleupagus was just Big Bird’s imaginary friend. It’s not too bad. I remember seeing it in the theater when I was 8 years old. It was so cool when I was 8! And the soundtrack wasn’t too bad, either. This was the first film where I learned that sometimes it’s worthwhile to watch a film all the way to the end of the end credits. I was hoping that with the release of The Adventures of Elmo in Grouchland that Follow That Bird would get a big re-release on video and DVD. But, it hasn’t. But who knows what the future may hold. . . . If you ever happen to see it in the video store, rent it and be 8 again.

It just so happened that this was on the Family Channel this afternoon, so I watched it. And, right after it, they showed The Muppet Movie. That is one of the coolest movies ever! And, it hast to be one of my favorite soundtracks. Kermit’s song in that movie, The Rainbow Connection, is one of my favorite songs of all time, right after Always Look On The Bright Side of Life by Monty Python, and UHF by “Weird Al” Yankovic. And the celebrities in that film! I don’t know if it’s just me, or a testament to those celebrities, but I could pretty much identify all of them! It just rocks. I keep reading online that there is this script in development called The Next Muppet Movie, which would be a direct sequel to The Muppet Movie. In it, all the Muppets have become rich and famous and have begun selling out, so Kermit tries to get them back to their roots. Apparently, one of the funniest segments has Gonzo being selected to be the next James Bond! I sure hope it gets made.

Speaking of movies, I got this brilliant idea the other day. You know how IMAX movies can only be 45 minutes long, right? It’s because the reels are so big. So, I got to thinking that the IMAX (and 3-D IMAX) format would be the perfect one to resurrect the old movie serial! You could have 5, 45-minute long chapters. The first one would premiere in April, and the last in August with a new one each month. You’d have the whole summer blockbuster season wrapped up! I’m currently leaning towards some kind of sci-fi epic. I think this is an idea that would rock if given its due.

Do you know what I find frustrating right now? The fact that I have begun writing these columns so far in advance. Tomorrow, Oct. 4, I post one called . . .And Get A Real Job, which I wrote three weeks ago. This letter, when I post it as a column, will be posted on Oct. 18. The one I post on Oct. 25 will probably be about my sister’s birthday, which is this Friday, Oct. 8. Do you think I’m getting ahead of myself? Man, maybe I do need a job. Then I can slow down on these columns! Oh, well, this is getting kind of long and it’s getting kind of late, so I’ll see you later!


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