Television: The Return of Toonami

 In what can only be described as an “April Fools’ prank gone right” Cartoon Network’s popular Anime-centric block is scheduled to return after about a 4-year hiatus, on May 26th.

First, here’s a brief history lesson. Toonami began in 1997 and was initially “hosted” by Moltar, a repurposed character from the 1960s Hanna-Barbera cartoon “Space Ghost.” In July of 1999, Toonami switched over to its more commonly known format featuring robotic host “T.O.M.” and his artificial intelligence companion “S.A.R.A.” aboard the spaceship “Absolution.”  In between shows, the block often featured video-game reviews, motivational speeches, and music videos. In addition, the block aired “Total Immersion Events.” These events contained narratives in the world of the Absolution and her crew. They were often promoted on their website in the form of web-games. There were three “TIEs” that pertained to the Absolution while a fourth showcased a five-part “microseries” that ultimately became the Anime series “IGPX.” After various design changes and scheduling adjustments over the years, Toonami was cancelled in the summer of 2008. Continue reading Television: The Return of Toonami

Something to Look Forward to:Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater HD

There are many games I can recall playing for hours in my youth – Pokémon Red, Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, and Super Mario World, to name the big ones. For years I spent my time in worlds that could best be described as imaginary (if not extraordinary), but my first adventure in (somewhat) realistic gaming was not Goldeneye, not Madden, but the Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater (THPS) series.

THPS featured an exciting and challenging new style of gameplay, which I could even poorly attempt in real life. I learned about the pros – Tony, Bam, and Bucky – the tricks – benihana, airwalk, and indy 900 – and the skater lingo -revert, grind, manual, and goofy foot. I began with the first iteration of the series on my Nintendo 64, but I truly became a fan with Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 3, which I continued to play until the current generation, meaning the last Tony Hawk game I bought was Tony Hawk’s Underground 2, which was released in 2004. Eight years later, I’m finally going to return to the games of my tweenage years with Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater HD. Continue reading Something to Look Forward to:Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater HD