Remembering 40 Years of Star Wars: The Force Awakens

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When I heard that a new company had taken over Star Wars from George Lucas, I had mixed feelings. He was 100% involved with the prequels, and while I liked them, I still came to the same conclusion that most people did: less is more. When he did the originals, he had other people telling him what they thought worked, which was part of the reason he wanted 100% involvement in the prequels. He felt we weren’t getting his full vision. But now, Disney would have very little of Lucas, even less than the originals did.

Then I found out JJ Abrahms was directing. I was still wary. You see, I do like what Abrahms did with Star Trek, but my main problem with his version is that he doesn’t want the movies to be their own thing. He kept relying on Nimoy to come in and play future Spock, instead of creating his own thing. JJ Abrahms is a great producer, but he’s much better when he’s playing with his own toys, like in Lost, Cloverfield, or Super 8. (I never watched Alias, by the way) So I wasn’t sure. But I decided to do what I always do, give the new guy a chance.

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Top 20 Worst Episodes #16

baby cakes#16. Baby Cakes

Writer: Charlotte Fullerton

Storyboard: Tom Sales and Corey Toomey

Season/Episode: 2, 13

Overall: 39

Characters: Pinkie Pie, Mr. and Mrs. Cake, Pound and Pumpkin Cake

Summary: Pinkie Pie wants to babysit the Cakes’ new foals while they’re away, but she doesn’t realize she may be in over her head.

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Top 20 Best MLP Episodes #17

last roundup

#17 The Last Round-up

Writer: Amy Keating Rogers

Storyboard: Sabrina Alberghetti and Nicole Wang

Character: Applejack

Season/Episode: 2, 14

Overall Episode: 40

Summary: When the Town Hall is destroyed during repairs, Applejack vows to use the money she plans to win in a rodeo to repair it. However, she wins second place and does not get enough money and does not tell her friends because she is embarrassed. They become worried and track her down at Cherry Junction, where they learn she is working off the remaining money she needs.

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One Faith, Many Paths: Nicholas Tieman

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This month, I interview an old friend of mine from my days at Christian Anime Alliance, just like Arri Lemons. Here’s Nicholas Tieman!

1) How did you become a Christian?

I was claimed by Christ in baptism in the first month of my life. I’ve been growing into it ever since.

2. What denomination are you?

I am a member of the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod. My family has been a member of this church body as long as it’s been around, and it’s a spiritual heritage I’m very happy for.  Here in the South, the dominant paradigm is Baptist, which is prone to legalism. Many people overcorrect into antinominianism, or by rejecting faith entirely. The Lutheran emphasis on ongoing repentance is particularly helpful to people in churches who feel like they can never be good enough but still want to follow God.

3. What is your current job?

I help Hilton Hotels maintain websites. I mainly work on a collection of foreign language web sites, like this one: http://www.hiltonhotels.com/fr_FR/france/trianon-palace-versailles-a-waldorf-astoria hotel

My job is interesting and not too stressful. I’m constantly having to learn something new. I love it.

4. What evidence can you give for God’s existence?

I went through a time where I felt severely challenged in my faith, to the point where I wondered if I was just fooling myself. One day I got my butt handed to me in a forum argument (this was in the olden times, before all the social interaction was consumed by the Book of Faces) and concluded that I should just give it up.  I was at the office that day and happened to mention it to a coworker. Before I then I never knew he was a Christian. I only knew him as a hard partying loudmouth, and I don’t remember him saying anything particularly insightful before or after that.  But he managed to say exactly what I needed to hear.

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Top 20 Worst MLP Episodes #17

on your marks#17. On Your Marks

Writers: Dave Polsky and Josh Haber

Storyboard: Ward Jenkins and Hanna Lee

Episode: 121

Season/Episode: 6, ep. 4

Characters: Apple Bloom, Sweetie Belle, Scootaloo, Tender Taps

Summary: Now that they’ve finally gotten their cutie marks, the Cutie Mark Crusaders have another problem: What to do next? And can they even still be the trio they’ve always been?

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Top 20 Best MLP Episodes #18

flight#18: Flight to the Finish

Writer: Ed Valentine

Storyboard: Steve Sanderson, Jocelan Thiessen, and Tim Packford

Season: 4, episode 5

Episode: 70

Characters: Applebloom, Scootaloo, Sweetie Belle, Rainbow Dash

Summary: The Equestria Games are underway, and Ms. Harshwhinney has come to the elementary school with Rainbow Dash to announce the Flag-flying competition for the children. The team with the best routine will be able to represent their town, and the Cutie Mark Crusaders want in. But can they compete even if Scootaloo can’t fly?

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Top 20 Worst MLP Episodes: #18

three#18. Three’s A Crowd

Writers: Meghan McCarthy and Ed Valentine

Storyboard: Mike Myhre and Mike West

Season/Episode: 4, 11

Overall: 76

Characters: Twilight Sparkle, Princess Cadence, Discord

The story begins with a scene that actually sets up one of the two arcs for the season–Fluttershy going to witness the Breezie migration. Twilight Sparkle gets a letter from her sister-in-law Princess Cadence, who has decided to treat her to a museum exhibit for her idol, the wizard Starswirl The Bearded. When they arrive at the train station, Discord is there and is apparently sick. He’s even passed on his disease to Rainbow Dash and Rarity. Discord asks them for a long list of requests (in song), which they agree to on the condition that he helps them. But because of his disease, they have to pull him to where the cure can be found by chariot. When they arrive, the plant that will cure him is guarded by a Tatzlwurm, a worm that looks like a pink version of the sandworms from Dune.

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