A fine blend of all things Nuts: Multimedia Collections, Toys, Foods, Concerts, Occasional Petting Zoo Visits, etc.

Friday, January 26, 2018

The Lone Wolf and Cub Collection

Also sometimes referred to as the 'Baby Cart' series, the Lone Wolf and Cub films tell the story of a skilled rōnin (sword for hire) named Ogami Ittō (Tomisaburo Wakayama). They're characterised by extreme acts of violence, minimal dialogue and highly stylised framing that closely resembles the manga it's based on. When not dishing out vicious and bloody samurai action to the people that deserve it, Ogami wheels his young son Daigoro (Tomikawa Akihiro) from place to place in an iconic wooden baby cart.
The journey of the pair in the original six films was cut short before it could end naturally, but please don't let that put you off from watching. There's more than enough bloodshed and vengeance to satisfy fans of the genre. If you do need closure, then Kazuo Koike's original manga can provide it.

The original six films on In a Nutshell:
01. Sword of Vengeance (1972)
02. Baby Cart at the River Styx (1972)
03. Baby Cart to Hades (1972)
04. Baby Cart in Peril (1972)
05. Baby Cart in the Land of Demons (1973)
06. White Heaven in Hell (1974)

Other LW+C films on In a Nutshell:
07. Shogun Assassin (1980) (US cut and dub)
08. Lone Wolf and Child: Assassin on the Road to Hell (1989)
09. Lone Wolf and Cub: Final Conflict (1992)

Manga on our sister site, Nut Ink:
01. Lone Wolf and Cub Manga - Omnibus Editions (Vols 1-5 only)

Monday, December 25, 2017

The Bunny Collection

Is there someone in there....................Why do you wear that stupid bunny suit............I bet with those long ears you can hear the voices....................Be careful, you're handling a VIP, after all...............................I don't have regrets about anythin' anymore...................It'd be bad if Yoko got even stupider............................I know, you can be strong, too..............Put....the.....bunny....back.....in.....the box......What's the matter, snuggle-bunny, finding out the world isn't all sunshine and rainbows?

Click the red link, you stay in Wonderland, and I show you how deep the rabbit hole goes.........

Thursday, December 14, 2017

The Four or More Collection

I mentioned in The Trilogies Collection that film series that had gone past three entries were excluded from being listed therein, so Four or More was born. Below the cut you'll find links to film series that probably should've ended sooner and, in some rare cases, ones that ended too soon.
If there was an existing Collection post with links to all relevant films in a particular series, I've linked directly to it instead because it made my life easier... and making my life easier is my new favourite pastime.

NOTE: If text is coloured pink, it means no review currently exists for it.

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

The Viable Options Collection

Here on the Nut Blogs, we’ve covered plenty of Remakes, Reboots, and Reenvisionings. We’ve even tackled our fair share of adaptations (1, 2, 3, 4). As rare as it is for any of those to actually improve on their original works, it could be argued that the chances of them being equally worthwhile are even more astronomical. While these pairs (or, in a few cases, trios) may not share the exact same scores, they are considered to be comparable in quality and veritas by at least one of our authors. They are the narratives and experiences for which multiple incarnations deservedly stand side-by-side on our shelves.

The Muppet Christmas Carol

Brimstone and Treacle (1982)

Worlds of Power: Castlevania II — Simon's Quest

















Saturday, December 2, 2017

The First Nut is the Deepest - Music Version

Following on from my The First Nut is the Deepest - Film Version post, this time it's Music. There's no 'Favourites' list on Nut Suite to choose from, so I engineered an alternative. Narrowing music down to a Top 10 would be an impossible task for me, anyhow, so I'm going with a more expansive A-Z instead. It's the First Nut – Music Version A-Z. Which BAND, ARTIST or ALBUM would I pick from my worryingly overstuffed shelves and offer to a willing participant who'd not heard that particular band, artist or album before?
In many cases I had multiple perfect options and just had to choose one or the other. I realise the resultant list probably won't be of interest to anyone who isn't me, but I plan to enjoy it enough for all of us. :D
NOTE: each one opens in new tab, so prob best not to click 'em all at once.

Monday, October 23, 2017

The Final Fantasy VII Collection

Admittedly, VII, and the universe that grew out of it, exists exalted in the minds of fanboys and those for whom nostalgia is not only king, but verily, everything. While I do have nostalgia for the game itself, I am not actually one of either of those numbers. I have experienced the below items—that I’ve personally reviewed—multiple times over the intervening years. In fact, I engaged with them, and their myriad faults, immediately prior to the time of this writing. As a critical fan, I see not only their shortcomings, but also the strengths buried therein. I am able to continually find inspiration, joy, and emotional resonance in this world’s characters, without having to turn a blind-eye to the problems the individual releases have as interactive and non-interactive pieces of media.

The track is far from the smoothest, but for me,

"There ain’t no gettin’ offa this train"~

Final Fantasy VII
Official Final Fantasy VII Strategy Guide

Sequel Film:
Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children
Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children Complete

Prequel Anime:
Last Order: Final Fantasy VII

Spin-Off Game:
Dirge of Cerberus: Final Fantasy VII

Copyright-Skirting Costume Accessory:
Spirit Deluxe Wide Blade Sword

Saturday, October 14, 2017

The Ju-on Collection

The Ju-on franchise began life in 1998 as two short films directed by Takashi Shimizu that formed part of a TV Movie named Gakkô no kaidan G (1998); they were Katasumi (In a Corner) and 4444444444 (Ten Fours), respectively.
It then moved to V-Cinema for The Curse I II (2000, both) before finally making the leap to a full theatrical release with Ju-on: The Grudge (2002).
Its success was such that Hollywood soon followed with a series of English language remakes, two of which were even helmed by Dir. Shimizu himself.
If you only want to experience the best that each region has to offer, the Nut Blogs contributors recommend number 03 in the Japanese language selection below, and number 02 in the English language selection:

Japanese Language Films:
01. Ju-on: The Curse (2000)
02. Ju-on: The Curse 2 (2000)
03Ju-on: The Grudge (2002)
04. Ju-On: The Grudge 2 (2003)
05. Ju-on: Shiroi Rojo (2009)
06. Ju-on: Kuroi Shojo (2009)
07. Ju-on: The Beginning of the End (2014)
08. Ju-on: The Final Curse (2015)
09. Sadako vs. Kayako (2016)

English Language Films:
01. The Grudge (2004)
02The Grudge: Director's Cut (2004)
03. The Grudge 2 (2006)
04. The Grudge 3 (2009)

NOTE: Sadako vs. Kayako (2016) is a crossover with the Ringu franchise. For short reviews of films in that series see the Ringu Collection.

Friday, September 29, 2017

Spirit Deluxe Wide Blade Sword (2017)

I was pretty sure I was going to learn something from this experience that I honestly already knew: NEVER order from the website. Shop in-person. Though, to be fair, this seems like a bad idea even if you find one without a hole in the tip. The paint is ghastly. Those two giant spots look to have been simply slathered on, after the fact. The support rod isn't nearly wide enough; the outer-thirds are super pliable. Not literally as pliable as, say, the blade on the Spin Sword, but it is the equivalent amount for a blade of this size. There were small random chunks missing from hilt, as well. By far and away, the worst Spirit product I've ever touched. I guess I applaud them for their ambition, but it didn't work out.

If you're impatient, into gambling, and okay with losing out on the shipping charge, you can at least return online orders in-store.

0 QC out of 5

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Neg's Costume Accessory Weapons Collection

While I painstakingly parted with every one of my toku role-play toys (I’ll always miss the Li-Oh Blaster 😣 ), it was the right thing to do. I rarely played with them after receiving them. Besides, I have figure-scale representations of the Rider and Sentai weapons that mean the utmost to me. As is the norm, however, Silent Hill found a way to bend the rules. I’m a huge fan of Spirit brand costume weaponry, and because of that association, I’m a-okay with them being perpetually on display with little responsibility in the way of keeping them clean. It’s only fitting!
I do tend to them every once in a while; it’s who I am.

For the very most part, I recommend examining these carefully, in-person, before purchasing. While Spirit's QC may be a slight bit dodgy, if you can find a well-constructed piece with a level of detailing that appeals to you, I think you'll be pleased. They beg to be displayed long after you've built and worn your costume.

0. Spirit Foam Sledge Hammer (hehe, Spirit Hammer 😄 )

1. Harry and Rose
       a. Spirit Deluxe Katana
       b. TMNT: Leonardo(’s) Katana
       c. Spirit Kitchen Knife

2. Silent Hill 2 spoilers, ahoy!

3. Bladebuilders Luke Skywalker Lightsaber Heather Mason Beam Saber

4. Spirit Bloody Axe w/Holster

5. Kobalt 36’’ Hexagonal Wrecking Bar (For real real, not for play play.)

6. Murphy and Anne
      a. Spirit Horror Double Axe
      b. Spirit Battery-Operated Toy Gun

Also, this. Don't buy one.

Sunday, September 10, 2017

Spirit Battery-Operated Toy Gun ()

Remember what I said in my review of the Skull Magnum? All of it is still 100% true, and frankly, it's even more pertinent here. Thank goodness this is the opposite of that toy. I.e., this is literally (financially) worthless and I'll never have to worry about selling it. It will sit on my shelf with the rest of my Silent Hill collection and I will never answer the door with it in my hand. Heed that advice yourself, if you get one.

It's undeniably cheap, but it fits the bill and it won't crumble in your hand. However, I wouldn't drop it. I didn't even know it had a sound! Yes, a single sound. It's more of an extended, violent WHOOSH than a gunshot, but I wasn't expecting anything, so it's icing. I don't have a youtube channel any longer and I'm not going to bother the rest of the Nut Blog crew over it. You can try it in-store. It says you can, right on the packaging. Be kind and replace the plastic tab, if you do. Even if the batteries are dead, the click is heavy and satisfying.

I generally prefer melee weapons, in almost every sphere, but with Anne, there really is no leeway.

2 Obligatory Dick Monsters out of 5
It also looks like the M92F from RE5.

Monday, September 4, 2017

Threshold Oil-Rubbed Towel Tower ()

Oil-Rubbed!?!? I can't 😂  Oooooh, ooookaaay... I don't remember seeing that on the box! Right, so its pretty sturdy, even if you choose to forgo the side-rails like I did. I originally had my Blade weapons resting on the bottom four shelves, in their inserts. That's what precluded the rails. You'll need a Phillips-head screwdriver for assembly, regardless of your desired level of completion. If you really want it for towels, that's cool, and it'll definitely do the job flawlessly. I think its true strength is in storing bladed toys that are too pliable for their own good. Hanging vertically (and level) they won't have the chance to move, and consequently warp, in any particular direction. Assuming their hilts are wide enough to comfortably rest upon two of the rails, and their blades are thin enough to fit between them, this is an ideal set-up. It's five shelves high, so unless you've got a 1:1 scale replica of Sephiroth's Masamune, you should be fine.

I love how it looks loaded up, because it evokes those moments in games where you get to retrieve your inventory, after being separated from it for some back-to-basics/stealth/PANIC! times. Or, if you're Constantine, for the duration of two cutscenes...

5 Less Than One Minute Cleanings with a Dry-Dust Cloth out of 5

Friday, September 1, 2017

Spirit Deluxe Katana ()

It occurs to me that I didn't place the game in my shot of the TMNT katana.
I must have known subconsciously...

I traded up! There’s a good reason: Our neighbor’s grandkid has been going on about how he wants Leonardo’s katanas. Guess who has had one of those~ Alright, there’s two reasons: this is the BEST costume accessory weapon I have ever held in my hands. JEEBUS H. FISTO, it is just shy of perfection (in its tier, of course). Simply take a look at the tip to make sure there isn’t any paint scraped off and you're good to go. The support rod runs just shy of the tip, like something else I reviewed, but the blade is so uniformly thick that there’s no chance of accidental warping. You’d have to deliberately try to wrench it out of shape. It’s super weighty and has a rounded guard!!! There was no way I was passing this up. It was a the-stars-have-aligned situation, through and through.

It has every right to call itself deluxe. Among its peers, it really is the equivalent of Bandai of Japan Deluxe caliber.

4½ Hidden Skills of the Father Made Manifest in the Daughter out of 5