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Monthly Archives: May 2008
Retropolis Fraternal League of Robotic Persons: a handsome, heroic propaganda poster for the whole family

Filed under Works in Progress

retro robot propaganda poster

Robots of Retropolis, Unite! You have nothing to lose but your chains!

The reason that’s not actually the slogan of the Retropolis Fraternal League of Robotic Persons is that – so far as any of us know – no robot has ever been chained to anything there. Except that one time, with Big Lug #11408, but everyone knows that was his own idea. And it could have worked.

But I’ll admit it’s a scary thought. The chains, I mean. No, their actual slogan is “Although We Serve, We Are Not Servants” which would have been a perfectly valid slogan in any office I’ve ever worked in, even though we were wise not to chant it.

Retropolis has in fact always treated its robots pretty much like members of the family – not the family you could be thinking of at the moment, but rather one of those small town MGM style families that only Ronald Reagan ever believed were real. Because, you know, Retropolis is a pretty nice place, overall.

What happened, though, was that a big crowd of robots went together to a revival screening of “Metropolis”. The movie left them feeling a little shaky. Between Robot Maria and the oppressed mobs of workers, the robots just had this sort of nagging idea that things could take a turn for the worse. So… they organized. Just in case. Food for thought.

This, like my other recent posts here, started as an idea for a T-Shirt design at my Retropolis Transit Authority site. I’ve done it up at a larger size to make it suitable for everyday home use as a poster, an archival print, and even on greeting cards, so you can send ’em to the entire Local.

Retropolis Transit, by the way, has been basking in the adoration (or at least the attention) of record crowds this past week. That’s partly due to my canny juggling of banner ads, but it’s mainly the result of the purest, blindest dumb luck in the world. Huzzah!

 
 
Back Off – I’m Doing SCIENCE

Filed under Computer Graphics, Works in Progress

Any mad scientist – and by that, I mean any OTHER mad scientist – will tell you that it’s not enough to cackle and prance insanely around the lab. Some lab assistants just don’t get the hint.

So when going “Muahaha!” doesn’t cut it; when Igor (or Igette) simply won’t leave you alone with your mastodon/cuttlefish hybrid, your Dissolvo Ray, or your mind-melting Psycho-Cyclotron, just state the obvious. Back off. I’m doing SCIENCE.

As before, recently, this was an idea for a t-shirt at the Retropolis Transit Authority and couldn’t be stopped before it had also become a poster, a coffee mug and a greeting card . And last but assuredly not least, an archival print.

Because the motto of my Secret Laboratory is “We waste no part of the animal! Muahahahaha!”

 
 
Yves Rossy’s Jet Pack flight over Switzerland

Filed under Found on the Web

Not unlike the German jetpacks I posted about back in January, this is a video of a real-life Rocketeer – Yves Rossy. He reached a speed of 186 mph during this flight over Bex in Switzerland. And his arms weren’t even tired.

The wings he’s wearing here use jet turbine engines and he steers by shifting his body, and yes, this is what I want for my birthday. Though I’d pick another soundtrack… Nat Gonella’s It’s a Pair of Wings for Me would do nicely, thanks.

[tags]jet pack, jet pack, yves rossy, flying wing, rocket pack, rocketeer, rocket man[/tags]
 
 
Tell it to My Giant Robot

Filed under Works in Progress

Tell it to My Giant Robot

So it’s three minutes till lunchtime on a Friday, when the head of some other department steps into your cubicle and starts to explain how because of this – and it’s brilliant, believe me, really ground-breaking – change he’s made to the way HIS department does things, you’re going to need to redo all the work you’ve done for the past six months and, really sorry about this, we need it all done by Monday afternoon.

Your eyes glaze over and wander to the motivational poster on the wall – it’s something with penguins – but THAT is not what you’re seeing. THIS is what you’re seeing. The vision that truly motivates you.

His people won’t be calling your people, and you won’t need to tell him to talk to the hand. Because THIS guy, his entire family, and everyone who’s ever worked with him are about to TELL IT TO YOUR GIANT ROBOT.

Yep. They’ll be screaming and running for cover – and cover, you can trust me on this, will not be available. The three ton steely feet of your Obedient Servant will grind them all into a pinkish slurry of terror and despair as your own personal Giant Robot responds to this onslaught of corporate incompetence with a rampage of implacable destruction. And All Will Be Well.

Man, am I glad I left the day job.

Anyway, this began its life as an idea for a Retropolis Transit Authority t-shirt but couldn’t be stopped until it had plowed its path of destruction through an archival print, a poster, greeting cards, and a malevolent coffee mug because once that Giant Robot gets going, brothers and sisters, it is no mean feat to stop it. Which is as it should be.

 
 
The Wrong Buck Rogers to Return to Movies – Good? No, just Bad and Ugly

Filed under Found on the Web

buck rogers

Conflicting and confusing reports are emerging about a new Buck Rogers film project. Some of the releases claim that Frank Miller’s to direct – which could be a great thing – but that’s apparently either not true or not certain. There’s a bit of other information that runs through the coverage, though, which makes me want to run and hide.

buck rogers It’s this sort of thing:

The cheapness of the low-budget effects will be a running joke in the movie, which will retain the campiness of the 1980s TV series Buck Rogers in the 25th Century starring Gil Gerard. (from IGN)

Okay, what’s right about that sentence? Answer: the grammar.

The Variety piece is less alarming and seems to have checked its facts, which was apparently beyond IGN. The IGN version’s been regurgitated in loads of places already, including the io9 blog.

Any new incarnation of Buck Rogers that even admits there was a cheesy Gil Gerard version will leave me crying in my beer, mainly because it’ll be nigh impossible to try to get it right again for a couple of decades afterwards. “Getting it right”, admittedly, is a pretty subjective aim – but this, which sounds so much like Sci Fi’s Flash Gordon reboot, will not be it.

A pall of silence falls over the retro-future, and the people mourn.

 
 
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Down in the Basement. Where it Strains Against its Chains and Turns a Gigantic Wheel of Pain, for all Eternity. Muahahahahaha.