Read Only Memory #04: Pizza Links

I’m a couple days later than I wanted to be, but the latest episode of Read Only Memory, Pizza Links, is here! So watch the above clip, then read the rest.

As many of you guys might know, this was actually the first episode of ROM I started working on before switching to Turnips In Love. I was tinkering around with this idea way back in February but didn’t really start to build all the assets until the middle of March. Once I had the big pieces in place I recorded my script and made the animatic for it. I absolutely hated it. I hated it so much I honestly didn’t think I could salvage it, and because I wanted to get something to Kevin over at GoNintendo, I came up with Turnips In Love. In Love was easy and cute enough that I felt it was a good replacement for what I was currently working on. Plus, it was perfect for nailing the “30” second run time I was aiming for.

While working on The Return of Captain N, I was trying to figure out exactly which idea I wanted to work on next. I decided that since I already put so much work into this short that maybe I should revisit it. I took a good look at everything I had script and audio wise and decided to throw away half of it. One of the problems with the original version is that it was much too long, going on for probably close to three minutes. You’re not missing anything as I managed to get to the point in a fraction of the time, though I didn’t quite hit my magical 30 second run time. Regardless, once I was able to really narrow down the key points, I felt much happier with what I was shooting for. It’s longer than your average ROM, but it is no where near the bloated beast it once was.

I had fun with this one because it gave me a chance to visit not just Link, but four different versions of Link. I tried to give each Link the same amount of attention, but obviously the star of the show is the Link from the old 80s animated series. Probably because he’s the most fun version of all Links. Sure, he’s corny and a total cheese ball, but that’s what I like about him so much. I tried to nail down the pure stupidity of Link from the CD-I games too. As for Wind Waker Link and Twilight Link, I needed to improvise with them a bit. I decided Wind Waker Link, being the smallest, should act the toughest out of the group. Twilight Link, well, I just wanted to turn him into a big baby. This video also gave me an excuse to put a Ninja Turtle in it, and you know, Ninja Turtles were rather key during the NES era, so he’s not out of place in the video game realm.

Despite already having a lot of work previously finished, this episode was much more involving than previous episodes of ROM. So much so that I needed to enlist the help of Frank to crank out a shot for me earlier this week (he did Twilight Link acting like a bitch, which I thought looked great). Having to deal with five characters was a lot of work, even if I did limit what they did in certain areas.

So anyway, I hope you enjoyed this episode. It’s sort of the last one for a little while. Next month I’ll be doing a compilation video of all the previous episodes but hopefully adding in some new stuff.

Theater Releases for July 23rd


Salt – Angelina Jolie plays Evelyn Salt, a CIA Officer who is accused of being a spy by a captured Russian defector. She goes on the run using her skills and past experiences to stay hidden while she gathers the information to clear her name. Directed by Phillip Noyce (Clear And Present Danger, Patriot Games).


Ramona & Beezus – when a grade schooler named Ramona (Joey King) senses that her family’s home is in danger, she and her big sister Beezus (Selena Gomez) have to save the day. From the popular book series by Beverly Cleary.

In limited release is Valhalla Rising about a mute warrior joining up with Vikings to reach the Holy Land. Also Life During Wartime about a family still dealing with shocking events that happened 10 years in the past. Finally there’s Countdown to Zero which is a documentary on the nuclear arms race from the Cold War until today.

I’m late for a very important ROM date!

I’ve been pretty good getting each episode of ROM out exactly one month after the next, so it was only a matter of time before I stumbled somewhere. If I had my way, ROM#4, tentatively titled ‘Link’s Pizza Party’ would be available for your viewing pleasure today! Alas, I’m really, really behind on the project.

It’s a combination of being busy, having computer issues, and the usual “I’m in too much pain to sit at the PC tonight” issues. Since I had most of my design work already finished as this was supposed to be the first episode of the series, I gave myself a bit of a break between this and The Return of Captain N. I spent that time trying to get my house in order for the impending appearance of our baby girls (which I’m still behind on!), and also upgrading my PC. The PC upgrade became an issue because it left me without audio for a few days thanks to my original sound card having out of date drivers. Unfortunately, I needed to do audio before moving on with the project, so the delay in getting a new sound card pushed back my work on the short. Before I knew it my self made deadline was in sight but I was hoping I could power through the short over the weekend.

Well, I didn’t power through it. I only finished one complete shot on Saturday, and nearly finished another entire shot on Sunday. I have about 9 shots (some easier than others) and was hoping maybe I could do a shot a day after realizing I couldn’t get it done over the weekend. Turns out I spent two hours last night putting some finishing touches on the shot I worked on the day before, and then spent another 45 minutes roughing another shot.

Of course I had that moment on Sunday where I thought “I can cheat this entire thing.” You know, just have some talking heads to get the job done, but when I played through that scenario in my head by scrubbing through the animatic it just felt boring and lifeless. Not only would I be cheating myself, but the audience too. Plus, I think a lot of the humor in this one is going to come from character performances. In the case of CD-i Link, it has to come through in performance and audio. So his one scene, which I did on Sunday and last night, was a bit rough.

I’m kind of going slightly crazy because I feel like my wife is about to give birth at any second. I’m determined to finish this short before she goes, and yet at the same time I have to get the house in order. Working on the short this entire weekend sacrificed any time I wanted to use on getting the nursery together, so my head is just spinning. There is SO much to do. If only I could quit the day job and get paid to do Shamoozal for a living, you know?

I can dream.

DVD and Blu-Ray Releases for July 20th

Cop OutLosersRunaways

Cop Out – Bruce Willis is a veteran NYPD cop whose rare baseball card is stolen. Since he planned on selling that card to pay for his daughter’s upcoming wedding, he joins up with his partner Tracy Morgan to track down a memorabilia-obsessed gangster. Directed by Kevin Smith (Mallrats, Clerks).

The Losers – Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Zoe Saldana, Chris Evans, Idris Elba and others play a CIA Black Ops team that is screwed by their own government and left for dead while on a mission in the Bolivian jungle. They stick together and use each one’s specific set of skills in order to find the people behind the screw job.

The Runaways – Cherie Currie (Dakota Fanning) and Joan Jett (Kristen Stewart) form an all girl rock band in the 1970s and revolutionize the business for women by writing all their own lyrics and music. The film chronicles the drinking and drugging of the young girls as they tour the world.

Also on DVD and Blu-Ray: The Red Shoes, Black Narcissus, The Most Dangerous Man in America, Mother, Just Another Day, Godkiller: Walk Among Us, Legends of the Dark Kings: Fist of the North Star, Forbidden World, Galaxy of Terror, NHL Stanley Cup Champions 2009-2010, UFC Presents WEC: Aldo vs. Faber and Being Human Season 1.
On DVD Only: Jersey Shore Season 1, Super Friends Season 1 Volume 2, My Boys Season 2 & 3, Matlock Season 1-5, Courage the Cowardly Dog Season 1 and Degrassi: The Next Generation Season 9.
On Blu-Ray Only: Tin Man and WWE Royal Rumble.

VEXIS Coming to Xbox Live Indie Games

A friend of mine, Brian, is about to launch not only his first game ever, but his first Xbox Live Indie Games title. The game is VEXIS, and from the trailer above it’s a puzzle game of the rotating and sliding variety. I know Brian has an affinity for puzzle games, so I’m really looking forward to seeing the sorts of puzzles he’s come up with for this game. This is the same guy that totally rocked Tetris during our NES Marathon for Charity last year, so you know he understands his puzzle games.

I’m not totally clear on a release date (he’s hoping and thinking this week) or the pricing, but last I heard he was going to charge two or three dollars. I know he’s worked really hard on it, so check it out when it hits. I’ll update this post once I get the info on that stuff. For now, check out the trailer!

Theater Releases for July 16th 2010


The summer savoir had finally arrived! Christopher Nolan’s Inception has finally opened up in cinemas across the country. Inception has lots of buzz around it, and for good reason, it’s the first film Nolan has done after blowing away nearly everyone with The Dark Knight. Let’s not forget that Nolan has a rather flawless track record of great movies on top of that. Inception, a movie that I *think* is about people solving crimes in a dream world (I’m probably completely wrong), so far has been well received by critics with a 84% on the Tomatometer. I’m positive this will be a good if not great movie. If you’re headed out to the movies this weekend, Inception should probably be on the top of your list.

If you’re a family man, you’re probably going to end up seeing Disney’s The Sorcerer’s Apprentice, starring our dear friend Nicolas Cage. Loosely based on a story from an animated segment of Fantasia that’s based on an old poem from 1797, Apprentice has Nic Cage being Nic Cage and wizards doing wizard things. Resting at about 40% on the TMeter, critics seem torn, but I think most agree that it’s a standard affair of CGI flair. I have no interest, but it’s probably not the worst thing you could see this summer.

A handful of other films are opening in limited release, including Valhalla Rising, which sounds like it could be insane. I hear it’s a trippy tale of a Viking being a straight up monster. It’s getting great press, so if you’re in the mood for something that sounds really out there and brutal, this could be your secret ticket.

Video Preview of Hulu Plus (Preview) on PS3

After work I downloaded the Hulu Plus Preview version for the PS3 and gave it a spin. I had read some less than stellar reports about it’s performance on other sites and decided to see for myself. I was pleasantly surprised to see that the video played nice and smooth in HD. So I grabbed my FlipCamHD, propped it up on an ottoman with a few books and ran through the app a bit.

The video is a little bit washed out because I’m shooting a bright screen in low light, but you’ll get the general idea of how this thing loads and how the framerate is on playback. It should be noted that my PS3 is hardwired to a gigabit network and I have Comcast Internet. I’ll post a speedtest after the jump.

All in all I’m impressed with the quality of the video and the speed in which it loaded. $10 a month for current TV series is pretty reasonable too. If more networks join the service I’m going to see if I can keep Comcast internet and dump their TV package!

DVD and Blu-Ray Releases for July 13th 2010

MST3K - The Bounty Hunter

I’d like to imagine that 10 years from now, The Bounty Hunter, starring Jennifer Aniston and Gerard Butler, would make perfect MST3K fodder. It is sad that today’s major release is this movie, which has garnered a whooping 8% on the Tomato-meter, running neck and neck with Airbender as one of the worst reviewed films of the year. I generally don’t like romantic comedies, and I’m especially tired of Jennifer Aniston making all these movies with her shitty boyfriends-at-the-moment. The only girlfriend role she was good at was in Office Space. I’ll give her a nice pass for that movie. Plus, Gerard Butler hasn’t been in a good movie since 300, and I’d even argue that 300 isn’t very good either. So instead of celebrating the release of The Bounty Hunter, why not switch gears to the fan favorite Mystery Science Theater Vol. XVIII, which also releases today.

Back in junior high when I discovered MST3K I loved it. I have fallen out of it and haven’t watched anything from those guys in probably almost 15 years. I’m sure I’d get my jollies out of it if I watched something from them these days, but thanks to the internet, YouTube and DVD commentaries, my desire to watch three people sit around trashing a movie has lowered. Plus, I think I’m old enough and somewhat clever enough that I have fun doing that on my own, hence watching “films” like Dragon Ball Evolution and The Legend of Chun Li. Still, I understand MST3K’s loyal cult following, so the release of Vol XXXVIIIVIII is welcomed.

That said, my money this week is on the BD release of Insomnia. I have never actually seen Insomnia, but it seems like Chris Nolan’s camp is hoping that one of his earlier and least well known films will receive some late attention as they have butted the release next to Inception, which opens Friday. As a result, I will totally be adding this to my NetFlix queue.

Also new on DVD/BD is Chloe, in which we get a few glimpses of seeing Amanda Seyfried in the buff. Other than a probably decent performance out of Liam Neeson, I’m sure that is the only good thing going for this film. Ben Stiller has an indie film coming out called Greenberg which sounds like a hoot, though reviews claim it to be decent. Then there is In Bruges and Alpha Dog, neither of which I know anything about and don’t care to look up.

Then there are a bunch of TV shows no one cares about like Psych, Saving Grace The Final Season (that was quick), White Collar Season One, The Lucy Show Second Season, Super Hero Squad Show (I’m sure there is some 35 year old comic book that cares about that one), Street Hawk, and two Best of SNL updates with Will Ferrel and Tracy Morgan.

And those, are your DVD and BD releases.