Monday, March 27, 2017

Bubblegum



Writing for Wastelnd is the most cathartic feeling I've had in years. I think a listening ear is something I've overemphasized - simply melding my moods with vocabulary, rather than any summation of colors, words, lines, songs, or so many examples of what else, feels incredibly natural.

The blog was intended more as an outlet to spurt out less personal ideas, such as rebuttals to arguments I've deconstructed, or my own mini-essays on entertainment topics. A blog that'd mainly serve as a host, which I'd link to necessary audiences.

The artistic journal it has become is really something of a dream come true; I've always wanted a long running history of my thoughts, and, almost to a tee, here it is. It's quiet, it's individual, and it's not something I feel a huge pressure to do. As previously stated, pattering away at the keyboard while I simply pour thoughts along the screen is as soothing as a hot bath. It's rather sobering, as well; I don't think I've left, nor entered the site with a strong emotional fire. Any sparks are doused rather quickly by the foamy bubbles of meandering freedom which such an aimless medium provides.

No real purpose to this ditty of gratitude, but here's to a new favorite hobby keeping me up all through the night. It's the best time of the day.


Good

 
I don't think I have an outward online persona, or if I want one. It's such a 'modern' facade; to make an impression based purely on a handful of images. I'm certainly happy with myself - self confidence has never been something I've lacked, which luckily pits me a bit ahead of the game when it comes to decision making and longterm intentions - but when it comes to a digital calling card, I prefer an artistic face - it represents me far better than a particularly attractive photo. I'd rather use the desaturated vector of myself from this very site as a one-note collection of 'me' than a photograph. Why blather about in reality when we have an entire vast digital world which can make our personalities so much more diverse?

This is something I've always toyed with... bouncing between an eccentric impact radiating from an electric homepage, to one that hardly existed at all. I think it's all about influence; I've never felt the need to project myself on the internet without a guiding hand. Perhaps because I take no interest in present-day phenomena, or perhaps because, again, I can sort of preemptively see the dishonesty of it all. The times which I have had a strong foundation of posts and the like were certainly fun, in a mindless sort of way, but I also feel as if something about pouring all of yourself into a medium purely intended to flaunt is fraudulent. Maybe even a little bit distasteful.

Even this blog is intended to be snugly packed in a dark corner of the net... I think an analytical following might limit what, as well as when I'd be willing to express. I'm familiar with the itch a consistent creator gets when they haven't envisioned a new piece in even the shortest of time, and the less of it I get, the better. My accounts on forums and the like are brief, avoiding a lot of specifics about myself besides perhaps a name or age here and there. I'm not even too sure what to do with my currently steady flow of art - as it is, I totally appreciate recognition, and I'd like to make the hobby something more boastable if for no other reason than to have but another small glimmer of pride, but the warmth of holding my creations tightly rather than treat them as golden eggs is comfortable.

I wonder what it's like to not have so many thoughts - or at least, to have fewer that go against the grain. Then again, I know I've been in that mind before; but it wasn't as neatly spotless and upbeat as one would imagine. It's a room pumped to the brim with Laughing Gas, dulling the mind and sharpening the smile. It has solid black concrete walls, shoddily build furnishings, and deeply melancholy overtones - but the sensations are so entrancing, one sees and just as quickly forgets. I guess that speaks for itself, doesn't it? "Ignorance is Bliss"  is really something of a stupid phrase. That pillbottle is lined with annotations that imply it'll eventually leave a worse impact than a present boost. It's always fun feeling a new rush, but don't go in without a gasmask... you'll still get a few small whiffs of the enticing odors, and you'll also be more protected than ever.


Sunday, March 26, 2017

Ridley's Kemp



Another journal style entry; always unspecific, but hopefully alluding enough to apply to most psyches.

I'm a bit full of myself. I have no issue admitting it; it's a trait of mine. I'm not too terribly vain, besides my outward implications - I enjoy the flashing lights of life. The natures, which I so often have rambled on about, are absolutely not below me. Although I cannot deny my desires for the world, I'd settle with little were a spirit filling the void me instead. I'm imperfect; but I have a voice pestering the back of my skull. His whispers are faint, but I seem to understand the gist; perhaps this is merely the shedding skin of adolescence. Put frankly, beyond all motives with which I still must consider, I'd far rather peer into the eyes of nothingness than those aching to peer likewise into mine.

Wandering alone on the chilled sidewalks is a peace I've yet to equate. Watching the airplanes far above glide smoothly past each star, displacing the tinge of burning leaves in their inky ripples as I stalk about hundreds of feet below... it is a loneliness that I hold far more vehemently than any love.

Recognizing myself as my own born soul, rather than an amalgamation of traits I long ago hoped would promote myself as a familiarity, is a goal which I've procrastinated for years. As new beginnings are continually rolled out before me, though, I finally have found a proper time but take my introspection more personally. The nostalgic emptiness with which I have fallen so hard for is found, presently, within my own self. And, as is my own belief, the self encapsulates all that is, was, and can be. Perhaps my aforementioned pride is less a product of instability, more one of thought.

The rain falling, dashing through steam and splashing on the asphalt; it is beautiful. The thoughts that drip from an old faucet... wonderful. And though one day I do hope to find a concurrent being with which these peaces may exist, in the meantime, I peacefully levitate above an apocalypse of crashing waters. Ones of my own blissful disregard, and ones that will soothe in the far distances of a shadow. Self.


Saturday, March 25, 2017

Surrey Hills



Yesterday, I suddenly became inflicted with a nasty stomach virus; with a harsh fever-migraine combo to boot. Aches, pains - further literal impact than anything has had on me in quite some while. As someone who is often a touch sleepless and groggy, feeling the unbridled downpour of difficulty that is a legitimate sickness comes as a bit of a smack in the face. It really reminds you just where you stand, in more than one sense.

Late into the night, surrounded musically by a melancholic drift as the credits rolled from yet another animated feature stuttering across the empty television screen, I found myself equally half awake. Still drowned in the mental blur of a long, draining day, but far more aware than at any previous point. I was stuck in the cage that is the dead of the night, as I all too often am; though having the shackles of a worn skeleton and torn build made the moon all the more cold.

Oversaturated in my yearn for tranquility - a feeling I'd have cited as a prime example of melodrama in previous accounts of nausea - I immediately grabbed hold of a contrast to the peacefully strained holding area I seemed to be in. Writing frantically among what had become an empty black, I poetically devised what was to be my most brief, yet possibly most encompassing piece of anecdotal reflection yet; a summary of the existential thoughts I have drawn myself back to.

Knowing we all face the evils within us. Each smiling, innocent face; harboring the disease. Sin controlling each and every momentary thought, being the hand that pushes us off the cliff we precariously balance upon. Twisting our wind-up gears, aiming us to pitter patter into the depths of hell.

Where are we; in that our worst nightmare is our popular nature. Who put the chemicals in the food chain.

Rather than an assertion or realization, it is a fallacious question with an answer both too complex and too indefinite to properly explain. A literal interpretation rather than any sort of building expose.



The following day, crawling a touch late to the beaming starlight, I can't help but feel a small touch of chagrin. Festering in a cave of spiraling mysticism, a creature forcibly locked away from the world for fear of it's unbridled oddness. So vehemently clutching it's fears, hatreds, and inhumane sensibilities, it becomes a schizophrenic shell containing naught but condensed explosions of instability. Who rolled the stone before his cavern, none do tell; whether the peoples of the village saw his vain eccentricity, or whether he himself saw their colorless superficiality. Walking into the fields of an entirely forgotten, and thus fundamentally new world; something some may dream of. Something only one who has faced a trial of observational introspection may observe; skin-covered eyeballs, blood-coated mouth and grossly gooey skin shimmering uncharacteristically majestically in the glow.

I feel chagrin in that trial. Still rubbing my cheek from a violently abrupt slap, I become the polar opposite of what I may have been. A child realizing his err; but coping, and understanding. Realizing precisely what he did wrong - while still aware that upfront punishment is among the few ways he'd have ever learned. A regret for ever having to tumble in so many ways. Yet, rather than trample further, I begin to see another ray of hope beyond the blinding revelations with which the burning sun has unscathed. Fault is as much in our nature as is the ungodly hand of Sin. It is what catches us from the precipice, and pulls us on to the next range. The landing is not easy; neither is the ride, nor the leave. But it is the sole assistance we have in recuperating from the evil we perform, and witness.

In what is perhaps the finale of my loosely continual slog of non-specifically pragmatic criticisms of nature, reality, and the demons that haunt whatever we may call our world, I feel a spiritual gust empowering me to end on a note properly alternative. Not one to solve each investigation - far more encompassing. Far less thematically impure. One that reflects rather than destroys.

There is darkness in us; we float within it as does a soulless rowboat among a graveyard of grimy seaweeds. It darts about, as do the flies - latching to the poor sailor's tangy skin, extracting his deeply intoxicated blood with nary a ponder concerning his well being. For this indifference is their temperament, as it is ours. But as he is tortured little by little, the sailor manages to heave forth. He has little strength, but sees the shore. He has come so far; the death and destruction he dove from now undoubtedly corpse-filled relics beyond the deepest reaches of the ocean. He rows on - rowing, rowing, rowing - beheading the weeds, displacing the flies. It is not an act of ignorance, for he is quite aware of his dishonorable survival; but one of enlightenment. As he eventually slides across the sands of an undisclosed Valhalla, he stares back to what was. No longer is there suffering, but merely the distorted visages of the marshes he struggled past. Their odorous clouds carry strong, but the issue was passed. He may have little - or, perhaps, the treasure itself. He may not know where to wander - or, very well, he could be the explorer destined to forever inhabit these forgotten ruins. He is anew. He shall never face a struggle as treacherous, for it is dead and decomposed. His spirit - free of the constant drunkard delusion that was his tortured self - enters the gates, of which he so long dreamed.

Better to float on. Better to smile. Better to hold on to the soul that has helped you here; and keep growing.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Cold Blood Toothpick


It's late.

I don't know much anymore. Yet I know all. After sacrificing the depths of my consciousness for the glitter, alcohol and ash covered linoleum of human amenities, I find it hard to reattach the cranium that was knocked clean from my neck. It strains to reach the spacey, ethereal place I once inhabited. Hard to rid of the gluttonous fat that came packaged alongside the vacuum-sealed human.

Being the only one in your head. The sole voice you'll ever hear, rambling within that strange, indefinite concept we apply to the hunk of fleshy meat that rests in our skulls. The little creator of the universe. Oddly, considering it's rather regal position, it strives to become one with the characters it has envisioned. Trying to rid itself of the duties that come alongside said role; wanting to understand the twisted world that it's own psyche has violently smeared across the canvas of so-called reality. Yet, despite it's ventures to grasp the hallucinations it provides itself, it knows this feat is purely impossible. It knows the gash of blotchy red paint in which it travels - gazing at it wistfully, adoring it's supposed beauty with glossy eyes - has been specifically crafted to challenge, confuse, and horrify the poor soul who traverses it.

Sadistic. Constructive.

Being that voice - that adventurous little entity -  places one in the lone spotlight of an empty theater. Thrown in the Colosseum, pit unfairly against monstrous demons. As they snarl their frothing teeth, their arrows aim dead at your heart; eyes filled with the terrible static screams of those within, forms shifting and morphing endlessly as they adapt to your each and every tactical thought. These are the creatures in our heads. These are the painters of our realities. These are the deities who carefully observe, and rightfully torture; Angels with dirty faces.

It's practically morning.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

One Man's Trash is Usually Treasure



In many critical circles, the argument is made that modern animated children's programming has become far too neutered; ignoring quality for income, relevance, and quantity. Rather than entertain via more expansive attributes such as engaging plots or palpable characters, it is said that the vast majority of shows dive instead into a pool of dumbed-down simplicity.

Though beginning with more openly subversive content often cited as being first seen in The Simpsons, relatively new series such as Adventure Time, Gravity Falls and Steven Universe are among the key examples used to describe the contrast between more the artistically aware and the corporate-minded; each show presents itself in an unrealistic fashion appropriate for a commonplace animation, yet holds it's own weight by having legitimate depth. - with multifaceted writing and a focus on creativity over typically market friendly concepts. Simply put, not unlike the classics of similar mediums, there is a quite obvious soul to each show.

The argument itself can be summed up with the following anecdote; "Shows produced for children should not treat the audience as mindless". Children are smarter than we often imply, and thus, it can be beneficial to expose them to more broadly existential topics such as introspection, fear, or even the very critical thinking that has pushed this topic to the forefront. Surely not every cartoon must be Shakespearean - some slight levity is fair, as a cornerstone of the genre - but there must be a sense of purpose overall.

To this, I disagree entirely.

Kids are smart - but they are not geniuses. It is wise to stimulate their developing minds - but absolutely not necessary, within this circumstance. Entertainment is produced for one core purpose; to entertain. Children may feel far more dramatically vast emotions while enthralled in the dramatic pits of The Secret of Nimh, but they will feel a quite similar rush with the bubblegum fun of Despicable Me. They almost certainly will see a difference in scope, but they will also easily identify an entertainment value that is perhaps lost in the midst of storytelling.

As more adult themes are piled onto a concept that is recognizably childish, I find that two reactions occur. One appeals to the aware mind; as a juxtaposition between safety and harsh reality, we feel an unfamiliar impact in what we have been conditioned to see as upbeat. The second, however, is the more important in it's detrimental qualities; it becomes distant to the young viewer. In aforementioned example Nimh, this is hardly an issue; as the film itself was geared toward the critical viewer who would naturally have the means to understand it's levity. It uses it's juxtaposition for an understandable reaction, setting itself in a distinguishable atmosphere. However, with likewise aforementioned modern televised examples, a show that is explicitly geared toward a simple audience takes fault in overwhelming them with dramatics.

Art has an unwritten fairness; even in cases in which there is a juxtaposition, there is also an unspoken focus for which it is totally designed. A setting in which it shall exist - even if that setting is one that intends to shock, or create uncomfortableness. Breaking this norm is not an offense, as often creates rather impressive works via challenging the frames with which it has given itself. However, it is an entity that a creator must be aware of. By introducing parallel attributes to a work, you must consider the entire piece. Will a cartoon glove match the wrist within a  photorealistic portrait? Will an upbeat keyboard riff blend amongst the troughs of shredding guitars? Is there a purpose to this change - or will it instead be an inconsistency?

Children do not see this challenging world of artistic conceptualization. They see intriguing visuals, enjoyable tones, and welcoming writing. Children may recognize the differences in quality between certain programs, but their enjoyment of said programs absolutely does not correlate. It is a somewhat foreign mindset, but not one that is totally beyond comprehension. Above all, this audience wants to be enthralled. There is a place for the so-called stupid, the absentminded; it appeals to an equally underdeveloped audience. Is it truly wrong to pump out media that is altogether little more than cheap jokes and colorful imagery if that is exactly what there is loud demand for? Perhaps these productions are not of no worth - they simply are designed for a very specific set of eyes. 

So, no, children's shows should not consistently be designed as artistic masterpieces. It's simply illogical, directing focus on aspects often too unusual or too uninteresting to the target. Focus on entertainment trumps all; a point that can be applied, and seen in countless forms of media today. To be blunt -there's a reason schlock has survived unscathed, while the challenging has consistently morphed and collapsed upon itself. There is an equal place for more 'quality' shows, of course - but they are not the so-called forerunners of a new age of enlightened children's animation.

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Immediate Thoughts - Kong - Skull Island



Fresh from the theaters, thoughts racing and popcorn breath fuming - if you're looking for a beautifully written entry, stray away. The following are my very opinionated, unprofessionally immediate thoughts on the above film. For the sake of spitting arguments rather than writing a full review, I'm writing in a tone pointed directly toward those who have likewise seen the film, and have a familiarity with the genre.

King Kong; the biggest American monster this side of anyone in-office. Arguably the father of modern movie monsters, he's a household name to rival the greats - Alien, Predator, and of course, the one, the only, Godzilla. Legendary and Toho struck creative gold with 2014's hit GODZILLA, kick starting an all-new era of international big-budget monster madness; leading films such as Power Rangers, Colossal, and Shin Godzilla to the forefront. Old man Kong couldn't miss the party - and, already seeing dollar signs at the thought of a certain monster mash, Legendary sent him a formal invitation.

With Kong - Skull Island, the gigantic gorilla has smashed back into star-studded Hollywood glory with a burning vengeance; gone are the rubber suits, the intricate models. No more Empire State scaling, or T-Rex clobbering. Feeling fresh for the first time in many a film, KSI brings us an excitingly lively take on the familiar monster.

As the second installment to the Legendary 'MonsterVerse', comparisons are inevitable to it's predecessor. Where GODZILLA failed, KSI succeeded. In many ways, the film feels as if it were a direct sequel to GODZILLA - minus the necessary titular beast, of course. Each character, though a bit upfront and typical, was recognizable; we knew the cast, and we could feel for them appropriately. Being centered on commonplace film tropes isn't always a negative attribute of a character - because we could identify them based on persona and appearance. they effortlessly held our attention, and even managed some very strong moments. There's spectacle galore -  no half baked artistry to constantly pull away from the testosteronefest here. The battles are huge, and look just as incredible as they ought to. Even some dashes of lighthearted, comic book-esque imagery and comedy are sprinkled into the mix, painting an excellently colorful image.

The best way to bluntly describe the movie is as a modern 'Showa' film; upbeat, a bit cartoony, but perfect for some popcorn thrills. There is an inarguable weight to the story and all aspects involved, but it is kept alive by a steady stream of humor and simplicity that can tastefully counter even the darkest of moments. It's candy - there's not a whole lot behind the curtain, but there's just enough character to it all to make that irrelevant.

However, something did feel a bit hollow about the film - not enough drive for the monsters to clash, not enough development and settling time for the large story. Some characters were perhaps a bit underused compared to their importance, and things felt very fast-paced. I've yet to decide if this adds to the eccentric tone, or takes away from a greater experience.

Upon further viewings, I hope to make a full review - I'm a bit of a Kaiju freak, obviously. But, based on one viewing alone, I'm happy to say KSI is certainly among the most fun modern monster flicks I've seen in recent years.

Saturday, March 4, 2017

Countryfied, Electrified, Genuine Country Dragon - The History of Tex Critter's Pizza Jamboree


Since The Walt Disney Company produced the first ever audio-animatronic character, Abraham Lincoln, automated beings have been a staple of the modern entertainment industry. Used in theme parks, films, and much more, this interesting form of technology has grown both more advanced and more widespread with an incredible pace.

Smoking, abrasive, inner-city rat turned children's icon!
One of the key players in the medium's popularization came in the form of  the Pizza Time Theater restaurants (now known as Chuck E. Cheese's). Backed by electronics powerhouse Atari, this chain of eateries combined arcades, pizza parlors, and small-scale amusement parks into one exciting package.

Immediately, entrepreneurs saw the genius of the concept; leading to the creation of imitators such as Showbiz Pizza Place, Circus World PizzaMajor Magic's All-Star Pizza Revue, Bullwinkle's Restaurant, and too many others to possibly list. Thanks to a mix of nostalgia and appreciation for each storefront's unique creativity, a fan following has recently sprung up, celebrating the retro fun of these locales.

Within this fanbase, one smaller-name entertainment center has newly popped back into relevance; Tex Critter's Pizza Jamboree. Collectors have acquired original animatronics from the stores, and fans have swooned over their cutesy designs. However, beyond this admiration, there seems to be a loss concerning information about the pizza parlor. With the help of the Retro Pizza Zone forums, fandom superstar CavitySam, fellow fan Masterpj555, and a trusty search engine, I've compiled all I could find into covering the rise and fall of Tex.


Tex Critter's was a joint production between Castle Entertainment Inc. and AVG Technologies, not unlike the well-known pairing of Corporate Showbiz Pizza and Creative Engineering. Castle, though seemingly having mostly disappeared to time, was a highly ambitious family fun center company, owning various mini-golf locations, arcades, and more. AVG's previous and future works spanned anything from other Pizza centers (such as the aforementioned Circus World Pizza and Bullwinkle's Restaurant), to full-on amusement park dark rides, to feature films.

The Tex cast - Skeeter the Rattlesnake, Country Cal, Foxy Roxy, and of course, Tex - was designed by Disney Imagineers Larry Nikolai and Rolly Crump, giving the crew a traditional cartoon feel. Each character, to varying degrees, served as a homage to the genre of Country music; deliberately distinguishing the show from similar electronic cabaret acts of the time, which focused moreso upon familiar or generally upbeat tunes rather than one consistent music choice.

Tex's was also one of the first entertainment centers to limit it's guests to families only, avoiding the grimy hangout atmosphere found in similar places.

Another unique feature of the stores was it's variety of entertainment. Though retaining the common arcade theme, Tex's also featured Televisions playing then-hip channels such as MTV, a small-scale
theater featuring 3-D films, computers running fun programs, and even an occasional special spotlight on local events (playing recordings of parades, ceremonies, and more of the such on screens through the store). Castle was impressively ambitious, and though little is known whether or not these features were implemented into each location, it's undeniable that they certainly put this chain far
above the comparatively simple ventures of competitors.

Unfortunately, there seems to be very few records of what the real stores looked like. There is one image of an outdoor sign, but no known shots showing the interior of any location. We do, however, know of some memorabilia, such as a member's card from a Puerto Rico location, official Tex shirts, and a full Tex mascot costume.

Even the animatronic band itself was high-tech considering it's mass-market production. Compared to the often simplistic quality of figures in other pizza parlors, it's easy to see that AVG was many steps ahead of these lesser forces. Each character clocked in at about 300 pounds, and eight feet tall. The 'Bots were specifically designed to last, using airplane parts to ensure they'd last as long as possible. Their face 'masks' were glued to an inner skull, and held snugly via buttons (unlike masks such as those used by Showbiz Pizza, which were loosely slipped onto the bare mechanism). They could even be remotely controlled via joysticks, allowing the characters to specifically look at things. As seen in this very rare footage, the Tex show was practically Disney-quality, with smooth, natural movements.


Estimated to be AVG's most produced animatronic show, it is believed 20+ locations existed. Oddly, AVG's website only mentions the Castle Park location, with no indication of the actual food chain in which the figures were used. I have a theory that the first Tex show was test-ran in the park, as it was also owned by CE, and upon it's success, the project was pushed further.

Castle Park was a popular attraction in El Paso, Texas, covering CE's various professions (including, of course, a state-of-the-art arcade facility and a large mini-golf area). It is believed that the above footage originates from this location.

1984, however, proved to be a fatal year for all of CE's outlets. The Tex chain, Castle Park, and a handful of other attractions owned by the company closed, indicating that CE had totally folded this very year. Sources claim that the closure of at least Tex was due to poor money management (presumably caused by the complexity of the stores themselves). A lifetime of only two years, it isn't surprising that CE's impact on the entertainment industry was minimal, at best.

By the time of Castle Park's closing, Tex and company were purchased and moved to similar (though not CE owned) attraction Castle/Magic Landing, which opened that year. The locale displayed their set in a familiar location - the pizza parlor. As CE no longer existed, there was no other Tex advertising nor merchandise around the park, isolating the trio. CL existed until 1988, when it closed due to both a lack of funds and a variety of controversies.

The majority of Tex animatronics were sold off in auctions and the such, or perhaps dismantled in hopes of scrap money. Many still exist, albeit in highly decomposed forms - though few have seen as much wear and tear as those given to Landing.

The park itself, rather than immediately leveled or sold apart, was entirely abandoned. Resting from 1988 to roughly 2008-9, the contents quickly grew eerily decrepit, forgotten by those who once perhaps adored them.

Tex and the gang, twenty-three years old in the accompanying picture, were sadly not spared. They spent seventeen of those years in disregard, and many more afterward. Melting, broken, and soulless, it's a sad sight to see the characters once so full of life now in this terrible (yet, perhaps even more morbidly, recognizable) condition. Even sadder, Landing's corpse was finally levelled in 2013, presumably taking what may have been the first complete Tex stage with it. A work of art, lost to history.

Luckily, it is believed most of the in-store Tex sets were sold off via auction (along with the rest of each location's assets). Designed for years of use, many are still popping up in the oddest of places (and oddest of conditions) to this day.

One such example is a set that, according to often-retold anecdote, was purchased from a closed Tex location  by a high school and used to teach students programming. An alternate version of this tale claims the trio was used for a play, by the same school. The characters were largely incomplete (missing their faces, skins, clothes, and various other pieces), leaving their inner shells and mechanics bare. The fiberglass shells were directly painted upon. Albeit non-official, this is the only known retrofit (or reworking) of Tex Critter animatronics. The characters were renamed "Sammy", "Miss Kitty", and "Uncle Frank", presumably to match their new context. Oddly, Skeeter the Rattlesnake is missing from the set.

As previously mentioned, fans have discovered their own sets, as well. Among others, CavitySam (right) and Masterpj555 (left) have uncovered sets, both in varying states of completion. Though currently in naturally weathered  conditions, both owners are working diligently to refurbish the crew to fully finished, fully functional states - a difficult, but impressive task. The animatronic community has taken a large interest in their progress, thus leading to a small revival in Tex Critter's relevance, with fan art, speculation, and general excitement clouding around the forgotten characters and their background.

Masterpj555 has taken it upon himself to begin clearing this fog, locating and contacting names behind Tex. One successful lead was artist Larry Nikolai, who upon learning of the renewed interest, has began recounting his experience with the project on his FaceBook page. Posts so far have revealed the manufacturing of the animatronics, the design process, and even his original maquette (used to visually conceptualize the stage layout, seen as this article's header).

Yes, despite Tex's long-ignored past, it seems he and his friends do have a future. New information is speedily reaching those invested, discoveries are springing up left and right, and new fans of the show certainly prove it's charm beyond it's limited exposure. The Tex Critter story - despite it's trials and tribulations - has yet to end. New information is old; which naturally means the various questions can, and hopefully, will be answered.

As information is still being uprooted, naturally, there will be periodic updates. I plan to add to the history through new articles. Though I intend to preserve this one as-is, any conflicting updates will be resolved.

With that, here's to the new life that been been breathed into Skeeter, Cal, Tex and Roxy.





March On


Another month goes by - with notably less posts than the first month, which unsurprisingly was a peak period in my activity here on Wastelnd. Various personal and technical setbacks have led me to accidentally ignoring this blog, but as things are at once back in order, I hope to slowly but surely regain the fiery pace I had blazed.

I intentionally have changed focus in my writings; leaning more to the personal, unabashed intentions I had initially scoped for this site. Naturally, not everything ought to be written - if not for my own comfort, than for the fact that they simply couldn't be expressed with any proper techniques - however, I am quite happy with the atmosphere these posts have dipped into, giving more of a soul to what will often tend to be a rather eccentric little 'time capsule'.

On that note; I find it very interesting to read back even to A Warm Welcome and reconsider opinions I had strongly expressed, as little as three months ago.  In fact, many of the points I make to describe myself I can now soundly rebuttal as faults which have set up previous 'failures' rather directly. Makes one revel in how their own mind has expanded beyond the confines it had once been contained in (... not unlike a pickle jar, perhaps), very much for the better - narcissistic, but not untrue. There's certainly some indescribable psychological advantage to laying one's self down on digital paper every so often.

Focusing on the present, March is, as seemingly always - at least, for me -, an exciting, busy month. Besides my own birthday on the 30th, I have a handful of neat events and goals laying ahead that I very much look forward to. Continuing preparations and work for my new DeviantArt page, pursuing new avenues of  individual life, jotting a series of literary ideas that may turn out longer than the Good Book itself, and adapting to a changing atmosphere both in and out of my own spirit is keeping things as electric as ever. I'm just glad to finally be long past the shock, and rolling straight into through the spark.