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Review: 'Rise of the Penguins' and 'The Warlord, the Warrior, the War', by Steven Hammond

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Rise of the Penguins The War of the Species has begun. An ancient race of penguin has reemerged. From this race a powerful leader declares himself Overlord and unites the penguin clans of the world. His goal: to drive the human presence away from Antarctica and to exact revenge for the atrocities of the past against penguinkind. (Rise of the Penguins blurb)

Killer penguins are rising up in a war against humans for world domination! Is Steven Hammond serious? Judging by his hilarious Facebook page, hell, no! But his Rise of the Penguins series (published through CreateSpace, no matter what he says about Rockhopper Books), is so straight-faced that it is a good example of Rambo-type take-no-prisoners military fiction. With spear-carrying penguins.

Rise of the Penguins, December 2012, trade paperback $19.99 (8 + 722 pages), Kindle $3.99.
The Warlord, The Warrior, The War, September 2013, trade paperback $6.99 (6 + 112 pages), Kindle $1.99. Both by Steven Hammond, Clovis, CA, Rockhopper Books.

Video: 'The Penguins of Madagascar' theatrical feature

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Jerry Beck’s Animation Scoop has the first trailer for DreamWorks Animation’s The Penguins of Madagascar feature, now scheduled for release on November 26, 2014; trading places with DreamWorks’ Home, which is now coming on March 27, 2015.

Does this look funny to you? It certainly is furry. The four Penguins of Madagascar are back: Skipper (Tom McGrath), Kowalski (Chris Miller), Rico (John DiMaggio), and Private (Christopher Knights), adding to the cast the rival North Wind, a task force of an anthropomorphic wolf (Classified, the leader - Benedict Cumberbatch), snow owl (Eva, intelligence analyst - Annet Mahendru), seal pup (Short Fuse, explosives expert - Ken Jeong), and polar bear (Corporal - Peter Stomare). Their motto: "Nobody breaks the North Wind" -- a fart joke; ho-ho! They are all fighting Dave, a.k.a Dr. Octavius Brine, an evil octopus (John Malkovich) who is out to kill all penguins on his way to taking over the world. Who will win? Who do you think?

Smile and Wave, Boys!

Word has gotten around that Dreamworks Animation has pulled a switch: The aliens-land-on-Earth comedy Home, originally scheduled for release this winter, has been pushed back to 2015, while the Penguins of Madagascar movie has been moved up to this coming November. To that end Dreamworks has just released the first trailer for the penguin movie. It seems that our military-style black and white team meets up with a secret agency known as The North Wind, a collective of high-tech armed animals from the arctic. The film is directed by Eric Darnell, who of course directed all three of the Madagascar movies. Fine, fine, but what we wanna know is: Will Marlene the otter be in the movie too??

image c. 2014 Dreamworks Animation

image c. 2014 Dreamworks Animation

Little Penguin Journeys North

Let’s stick with the bird theme for the moment. Pengey Penguin is an orphaned flipper-bird who is the star of two new hardcover novels for young readers — both created by author John Burns. In The Many Adventures of Pengey Penguin, our smooth-feathered hero ventures out into the Big World, encountering many dangers yet making friends at the same time. In The Further Adventures of Pengey Penguin that “Big World” becomes New York City, as Pengey moves in with his adoptive human friend — and both of them learn to make the situation work. Visit the official Pengey web site and you’ll find not only the books and several tie-in items like Pengey t-shirts, but also a collection of nature documentary shorts and even links to penguin-themed cartoons. These books are not available in stores: Only on-line, so visit the web site to get them.

image c. 2014 John Burns

image c. 2014 John Burns

One Shots from the Ape

Two new full-color one-shot comic books from Ape Entertainment’s Kizoic line are set to hit stores later this month. Both of them are tied in to Kizoic’s successful Dreamworks Animation comics. And both of them have long titles! In Kung Fu Panda: Tale of Two Noodle Shops, “Business at Mr. Ping’s noodle shop has been booming since his adopted son Po became the legendary Dragon Warrior. But when a new noodle shop opens in the Valley Of Peace, touting nightly entertainment by the Dragon Wizard, can Po lure back his father’s clientele? Or has his act gone as stale as noodles left out overnight?” Find out in a story written by Troy Dye and illustrated by Massimo Asaro. Check it out at Things From Another World. And then, there’s The Penguins of Madagascar: Mortzilla vs. King Kowalski, written by Jackson Lanzing with art by Bob Renzas and Antonio Campo. Well, frankly, we don’t think we can tell you about it better than the cover does! Either way, find out more at Mile High Comics.

New MC Crumbsnatcher rap video gathers many subcultures

Your rating: None Average: 2.3 (7 votes)

… takes them to the dungeon, and does bad, bad things to them. If you thought VancouFur had an offensive theme, watch out! This one is truly NSFW, and best for those who appreciate wanton displays of licentious content.

The queer furry rapper's video, "Why the Boys All Love Me", follows an announcement for the making of a "nightmarish gay goth animal S&M" video at Halloween in San Francisco. It flaunts his mission to "put Satan back into hip-hop", and makes a sequel to a previous video featuring fursuiters. This time, Furry content is minimal, and indirectly limited to a few cameos and participation by dedicated furries who cross over between that group and others (such as the S&M fetish scene). Please consider it labeled that way up front, and view accordingly.

Everyone’s Favorite Penguin — In Color

Before they were surfing, before they were singing and dancing, before they were even marching, penguins were… resting among the dandelions. Throughout the variations of Bloom County and all of its off-shoots, one constant has been the penguin known as Opus. Now creator Berkeley Breathed has brought together all of the Opus full-color Sunday strips from 2003 to 2008 in one hardcover collection, Opus: The Complete Sunday Strips (appropriate, huh?). Besides our shy, friendly, waddling friend, this “magnum opus” (sorry…) also features many well-known and well-loved characters from Mr. Breathed’s comics new and old, some of them making their final appearances. Amazon has the book available for pre-order, and IDW Publishing will have it out this December.


image c. 2012 IDW Publishing

Controverisal SF rapper plans nightmarish gay goth animal S&M music video

Your rating: None Average: 3.3 (4 votes)

MC Crumbsnatcher's recently released first music video is set to be followed by a second video shoot on October 15, timed to benefit from Halloween season. The video is themed "S&M gay bar in hell", and is meant to cross over with leather/animal costuming popular among a subset of the San Francisco furry community. It will feature a story about witches who abduct Crumbsnatcher's love interest, a penguin.

A series of videos are set to follow, including a shoot in Las Vegas for a wedding scene of a unique nature.

San Francisco rapper MC Crumbsnatcher's furry music video

Your rating: None Average: 2.7 (7 votes)

As a club-goer most likely to get down to goth/industrial/EBM, I'm not qualified to say much about hip hop/rap. However, I know that MC Crumbsnatcher is a secret goth too, and that's my fursuited ass he's humping at 4:00 in the video, so let's do this.

The San Francisco Bay area hosts many subculture scenes. They bring people together who often stay separate in less busy places. MC Crumbsnatcher's ties might be tagged as spoken word/slam poetry, indie rap, electro, Nerdcore and Homocore. His Facebook page also lists Poo Joke Teller, ruiner of childhoods, and being a trained psychic. Let's add Furry to the list.

Content warning: Video contains extremely graphic sexual language and suggestive dancing.

Review: ‘Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted’ is Furry Jesus

Your rating: None Average: 3.8 (4 votes)

Madagascar 3 I was in a bad mood all day when I went to see this movie. A real bad mood.

I was looking forward to seeing it, however, because I decided it would cheer me up. I wasn't expecting it to be great and cheer me up; I expected it to be bad, and then I would get to take out all my frustrations on it in my review.

Essentially, if this movie was not the second coming of Furry Jesus, I was going to rip it a new orifice which I would then proceed to assuage my rage.

Can I even write that?

Anyway, you read the headline; this movie cheered me right up in the way I did not expect it to. By not sucking. Also, by not only not sucking, but by really not sucking a lot.

Here Come the Hero Petz

First off, Happy Mother’s Day to you and yours!

Suddenly there is much ado about Hero Petz, written by Dale Mettam and illustrated by Juan Fleites. First off, a quick recap from the original series: “Even as the evil Itachi Clan of ninja weasels tightens its grasp on Peludo City, six heroes — okay, five heroes and a crazy Monkey — stand ready to defend the innocent and fight for justice. El Conejito the Rabbit; Wonder Squirrel; Steel Shell the Turtle; Sensei Penguin-San; Kapitan Brüllaffe the Monkey; and Golden Hamster are the Hero Petz! Together, they take it upon themselves to keep watch over the city and protect the innocent!” First off, this June Stan Lee’s Kids Universe is re-releasing the original 80-page graphic novel (from 1821 Comics) in trade paperback. Also, there’s a video trailer for a new Hero Petz video game — as well as several fan reviews — up on YouTube.


image c. 2012 by Juan Fleites

Copycat Dancing Penguins

When an animated movie becomes a hit, or even when it’s likely to become a hit, you’d be amazed at the number of copy-cat knock-off projects from little animation houses (often overseas) that will start to flood the direct-to-video market before, during, and after that film. Renegade Animation from right here in the US of A have started making a reputation for themselves with projects like this — Chop Kick Panda, anyone? Now here comes the latest: Tappy Toes, which we found over on Cartoon Brew. It’s a 41-minute 2D animated film, directed by Darrell Van Citters, which is an obvious “homage” to the Happy Feet series. Check out the trailer on YouTube, and make of it what you will.


image c. 2012 Renegade Animation

Review: ‘Happy Feet Two’ should have been about krill

Your rating: None Average: 3.5 (6 votes)

Happy Feet Two

There's a long tradition of horror stories set in Antarctica. H. P. Lovecraft set In the Mountains of Madness in the white continent, featuring a race of giant cave-dwelling albino penguins who shrieked “Tekelili!” over and over.

Happy Feet Two continues the tradition of Antarctic penguins repetitively crying out horrific noises. Instead of shout-outs to Edgar Allan Poe, however, these penguins cry out dated pop songs. The horror, the horror.

August 2011 Newsbytes archive

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For historical purposes, a collection of links and other tidbits posted to Newsbytes in August.

Anthrocon bumped for . . . 2012 NHL Entry Draft?

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Anthrocon announced Friday night that next year's convention had been moved up a week to accommodate a mystery event, at the request of the City of Pittsburgh.

The new dates are June 14–17, 2012. Anthrocon was duly rewarded for its flexibility:

Pittsburgh has been given a very rare opportunity to host an event that they have been wanting to host for many years. The only trouble was that the proposed event (and we won't say what it is until it is officially announced) would lie in part over Anthrocon's planned weekend. [...] As much as we love our adopted home city and would do anything in our power to support them, we were hesitant to change the date of our convention after having announced it.

Pittsburgh replied with, "What if we got you another hundred hotel rooms within walking distance of the Convention Center?" — We said, "Where do we sign?"

While the event has not been announced, it has been rumoured that the NHL Entry Draft, convened annually in late June, might be coming to Pittsburgh for the first time since 1997.