SELF INDULGENT CHRISTMAS SWAG POST.Eh, it's "Boxing Week" and blogging is pretty light 'cause I got stuff for Christmas and I'm watching/playing it.
If the previous post seemed like it ended rather abruptly, it's because I had to go upstairs to hand out the presents I got everyone and then unwrap my own presents. And I got a pretty good haul of gifts this year; possibly the best since about 2000.
PRESENTS I EXPECTED:
(Mainly because I was there when my mother bought them after I pointed them out to her)
Patlabor: The New Files DVD collection (as described in this entry)
Ah My Goddess TV series volume 2 (things pick up a bit from the often excruciatingly slow-paced, even compared to the manga, first volume as Belldandy's sister, Urd, and Keiichi's sister, Megumi, show up, but the comically mischevous demon girl, Mara, only appears in the preview for episode 11, on the third volume).
Slayers TRY complete DVD collection (not something I had originally planned on getting or even asking for for Christmas, but, when I chose my "surprise presents" at the Comic Book Shoppe the other week, my mother said I could have something else, and I noticed that all of Slayers TRY was only $50, so I went for it. Unfortunately, when I went back to the Comic Book Shoppe on Christmas Eve, I noticed that they now had the original Slayers series for the same price too, and I would have probably chosen that one, since I'm getting Slayers Try, the third series, pretty much "blind", while I had seen most of the original series at the anime club, and even have a couple of the ancient subtitled VHS tapes of it.)
King of the Hill: The Complete Fifth Season (well, duh, you knew I'd be getting this. Possibly the best single grouping of episodes from this show. Highlights include "The Perils of Polling", wherein Luanne embraces Communism and Hank ponders skipping election day (2000) because he thought George W. Bush had a weak handshake, "When Cotton Comes Marching Home", one of the few sympathetic Cotton episodes wherein Cotton has trouble getting time off from his employer to attend a Veteran's Day parade, "Chasing Bobby", wherein Hank's old Ford pick-up truck finally goes to "pick-up Heaven" (the real one), "Ho Yeah!", the one wherein Hank unintentionally becomes a pimp and faces off against the Snoop-voiced Oklahoma City pimpmaster Alabaster Jones, "Luanne, Version 2.0" (though the official website calls this episode "Luanne, Virgin 2.0), wherein Luanne becomes a born-again virgin, taking a vow of chastity until marriage, and almost marries the first young guy (voiced by Owen Wilson) that she encounters just because they're so eager to have sex, and "It's Not Easy Being Green", wherein Hank has to pretend to be interested in the environment to prevent the drainage of a quarry where Hank, Dale, and Bill accidentally sunk Boomhauer's Ford Mustang many years before.)
Beavis and Butt-Head: The Mike Judge Collection (40 select Beavis and Butt-Head shorts plus a handful of videos and a few other items. It's far from being a completeist set, but music rights costs would make a truly "complete" set astronomically expensive. My copy also came with a bonus disk in a plain envelope: the Holiday Bonus Disk with the two main animated segments from Beavis and Butt-Head Do Christmas, as described in this entry, but without the Christmas music videos, the viewer mail segments, and the burning log instrumental music bits.)
PRESENTS I DIDN'T EXPECT
Hickory Farms Truffles (they're okay, but too rich to eat more than one or two at a time)
HMV Gift Card with $50 CDN on it (semi-expected; I kinda still want either South Park season 6 or Lost season 1, but I haven't yet made any specific plans for how I'm going to use this and would actually rather just hold on to it for a while for DVD purchases I may not yet have really foreseen. Or maybe even CDs, if I find one of those anime soundtrack albums I want.)
My FBI: Bringing Down the Mafia, Investigating Bill Clinton, and Fighting the War on Terror by Louis J. Freeh (I can't exactly say much of anything here about a book I haven't read yet, though I assume the title is self-explanitory. My mother also got me a deluxe wooden bookmark with a metal plate with two semi-cartoonish fish on it.)
Shaman King: Master of Spirits (Gameboy Advance game based on the manga/anime series shown on 4Kids TV. Not quite what I asked for, since I wanted an old-school Japanese RPG to play on the bus and this is more of an action game, but I'll still play it anyway. Straight action games can be fun too, just RPGs have a longer shelf-life due to their repetitive nature.)
Pee-Wee's Playhouse 2nd box set (Seasons 3, 4, and 5 of the classic CBS children's series from my late preteen and early teen years. While I've seen clips of it fairly recently, I'm not sure that I've seen a full episode since about 1991, when Paul Reubens got arrested for "doing the Han Solo" at a Florida porno theatre. I'll try and ignore the fact that Cowboy Curtis is Morpheus from The Matrix (Lawrence Fishburne).)
And, the most unexpected gift of all:
Sony Playstation 2 (This was an incredible surprise: all three of my siblings took pity on me for playing a stone-aged Sega Dreamcast from ancient 1999 and banded together and bought me a brand new PS2, and it's one of those slim and top-loading "Playstation Two" units that's incredibly shrunken compared to the old PS2 units. It's actually significantly smaller than even my ancient Playstation 1 from 1997, which I didn't need to have on my TV unit shelf anymore since the PS2 is backwards compatible. It's exactly the size of this medium-sized paperback book I have of the Kosovo war. I'm hoping I can find a way to do a "region switch" on this unit so I can finally watch my Region 2 Yokohama Kaidashi Kikou ("Yokohama Shopping Log") DVDs on my television. I also got a used copy of Gran Turismo 4 and two 8 Mb memory cards, and my brother, John, is leaving several RPGs and The Getaway: Black Monday here for the time being. I may also go over to Microplay and see if I can get either Star Ocean 3 or Kingdom Hearts cheap. I guess I really do have great siblings sometimes.)
Also this Christmas: I tried dragging out the old Noma Christmas tree from the shed in our backyard, but it was looking fairly trashy and we had somehow lost the base in the move, so my brother went to a store, probably Canadian Tire, and got a brand new artificial tree complete with built-in lights for only $50, since all the Christmas decorations were already being severely marked-down by last weekend.
My sister's fiancé was too busy with something important to come over to our house for Christmas dinner on Christmas Day itself, so my "Christmas dinner" ended up being a microwave "TV dinner", just like Coach Z was eating in last year's Homestar Runner "Decemberween" cartoon (though I was eating General Tao chicken, not Salisbury steak, and I like General Tao, so it's not like I was complaining). Incidentally, I was suprised that the Brothers Chaps didn't do a "Decemberween" cartoon this year, especially since they already took a two week break from Homestar Runner before Christmas.
My brother John also brought some DVDs from Vancouver, so I watched the first two seasons of Sealab 2021, the Flash-ish cartoon from Cartoon Network's Adult Swim that has never been shown on Canadian television. Pretty amusing stuff, especially the communication guy's James Bond villain-ish henchmen.