(Nerd) Lunch Special: Tallahassee Chef's Sampler 2010

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I've been here before and I'll say now what I said then...Och.

Forty-six (see below for complete list) dining establishments from Tallahassee and surrounding areas converged on the Tallahassee Mall this evening to set up the city's largest all-you-can-eat buffet. And once again, I was able to score some complimentary tickets and partake of this celebration of gluttony. (Captain Marvel would be so ashamed.)

In 2008, my wife and I only ate at 13 of the 50. This time, we upped our score to 16 of 46. So...go us or something.

Last time I did this, I didn't have an iPhone and offered no pictures so my review was lots of boring words.  This time, I'll spare you the horribly verbose blog post and offer the three best places then point you to the Nerd Lunch Facebook Fan Page where you can see a gallery of all the images I took each with a detailed caption describing what I ate.  You should be able to view them without becoming a fan, but while you're there, why not?

Hobbit's American Grill

This might have been my favorite stop of the night, but it's so hard to say. Chicken club wrap on the left and a fiesta ranch chicken wing on the right. This was from Hobbit American Grill. Should have known Hobbits would make awesome food what with their six meals a day plan. (There were no second breakfast samples this evening.)

Cabo's Island Bar & Grill

This place served up an awesome cup of chili. Cabo's is going on the list of places to visit for the chili alone.

Lucy & Leo's Cupcakery

What would be an event like this without "one more bite" of something. Here's a chocolate cupcake topped with chocolate icing and a chocolate covered coffee bean from Lucy & Leo's Cupcakery. Mighty good bite to end on. Thank you Lucy and Leo.


Here's the complete list of participants. As I get time, I'll try to add URLs for these places:
Andrew's 228
Andrew's Bar and Grill
Angelette's Cajun Kitchen
Another Broken Egg Cafe
Anthony's Wood Fire Grill
Applebee's
AZU Lucy Ho's Restaurant
Barnacle Bills
Bella Bella
Cabell's American Bar and Grill
Cabos Island Bar & Grill
Carrie Ann & Co.
Catering Capers
Coca-Cola Tallahassee
Community Coffee Co.
Cone Distributing
Famous Dave's
Granddaddy's Barbeque
Harry's Seafood
Hats Off To Food
Hobbit American Grill
Japanica Steakhouse
Killearn Country Club
Krispy Kreme
Lucy & Leo's Cupcakery
Marie Livingston's Texas Steakhouse
Masa
Melting Pot
On the Border Mexican Restaurant
Peterbrooke Chocolatier
Piggy's BBQ
Po'Boys Creole Cafe
Premier Wine
Roly Poly
Romano's Macaroni Grill
Shane's Rib Shack
Shula's 347 Grill & Hotel Duval "Pre-Event Reception"
Southern Wine
SouthWood Golf Club
Stinky's Fish Camp
Sunny Days Bakery, LLC
Tijuana Flatts
Tomato Cafe & Tea Room
Trail Break Cafe
University Center Club
Wakulla Spring State Park

Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths

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Note from CT: I'm honored to have known the man/myth/legend who submitted the following review for our site. Krebz is an expert on many things "nerd" and has passed along the following review of the upcoming Justice League movie due out tomorrow. How has he seen it already?! He's seen it because he's "Krebz!"

Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths

"Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths" is the latest animated feature based on the DC comics universe.  After last year's excellent "Superman Batman: Public Enemies" blew me away, I expected "Crisis" to be a fast-paced, action-packed thrillride, full of humor, drama, fistfights and explosions, with nods to some classic Justice League comic book moments.  And that is exactly what I found.

Based on many classic DC comics which pit the Justice League against their "evil" counterparts from an alternate Earth, the Crime Syndicate, the movie opens with the "good" Lex Luthor and the Jester breaking through some heavy security to steal a key.  Luthor uses the stolen key to escape into the Justice League's dimension.  There, he hopes to enlist their aid in returning with him to stop the Crime Syndicate once and for all.  Of course they agree to help, but they are immediately attacked upon returning to Luthor's Earth, by Owlman and his team of super bad guys.  Batman realizes Owlman wants the key, not just to rule the Justice League's Earth, but to destroy every dimension utterly.

There are some fantastic fight scenes in this movie.  One of the most memorable fights takes place in a cloudy sky, and involves all the characters who can fly.  Seeing the Crime Syndicate versions of various DC superheroes was fun.  Owlman's team is comprised of versions from the Detroit-era League, including Halo and Gypsy.  Superwoman's team of Made Men reminded me of the Shazam family.  Even the "Year One" Justice League team showed up, with an appearance by Aquaman, who seems to have something to prove.  Some elements of Grant Morrison's "JLA: Earth 2" can be found, such as Superwoman's romance with Owlman.

It is somewhat impressive to have well-known actors giving voice to the characters, but if the actor's strength isn't in his voice, then the movie suffers.  James Wood's Owlman slurs his words so much you might think he nipped from a flask between scenes.  William Baldwin as Batman just doesn't have the gravitas of Kevin Conroy.  And Mark Harmon's Superman had me longing for the bland but stern Tim Daly.  However, while Chris Noth is no Clancy Brown, Noth's turn as Lex Luthor, along with Gina Torres' portrayal of Superwoman, are the two most exciting performances in the movie.

In all, the movie has a great story, some awesome battles, sly in-jokes and subtle references to DC history.  And even though I had some issues with miscast actors, the performances here are all solid.  This film doesn't raise the bar any higher than was already set by "Public Enemies," but it maintains that level consistently throughout.  I enjoyed "Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths" more than I had anticipated.  It leaves me with the hope that another "Crisis" movie will be made, this time concerning "multiple Earths."

Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths is available in a single disc DVD, a double disc DVD, and Blu-ray.


If you want to read more from Krebz, check out his blog, The Defiance Log.

Meet the New Nerd Lunch...

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...Same as the Old Nerd Lunch



Introducing the new look for Nerd Lunch. We now have a swanky new logo, a slightly spruced up look here on the blog, new Twitter and Facebook icons/backgrounds, and a new store.

(Thanks to The Atomic Geeks for bringing printfection.com to my attention.)

A powder keg of black fury...

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... that explodes onto DVD and Blu-ray today. Black Dynamite!


Dig on a copy and stick it to The Man, you jive turkeys.

The Fellowship of the Ring

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NWA SupremeProfessional wrestling had been a huge part of my life over the past 25 years and easily one of my most intense hobbies. While you’d never know that from the rare wrestling posts here, I used to spend hundreds of hours and dollars every year on wrestling telecasts, live events, and merchandise. But for several years my interest has steadily waned. There has been no singular reason, but the tipping point clearly was the failure of World Championship Wrestling and the subsequent Invasion angle with the Weekend at Bernie’s versions of WCW and ECW.

Fortunately, I’m still able to get my sports entertainment fix from the occasional indie wrestling show. For the uninitiated, indie wrestling promotions are the minor leagues compared to WWE or TNA. The shows often take place in bars or high school gymnasiums and the wrestlers often have day jobs at Jiffy Lube or working construction. Indie wrestling promotions are also places where guys get paid gas money or nothing at all, where most fans still cheer for the faces (good guys), and where the classic tricks of the trade are still employed.

A couple weeks back my buddy, Big Dan Greenup, and I were able to attend an NWA Supreme event in downstate Illinois. The steel cage main event was a bit anticlimactic, but the rest of the card was solid and the crowd was a lively mix of shut-ins and smarks like us. NWA Supreme even pulled out the rarely seen gimmick of a heel ring announcer. It was a fun evening and reminded my why I haven’t completely given up on pro wrestling. I may not be able to call myself a fan at this point, but I may again someday.

The Man Behind the Mountain

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On occasion, I like to find some cool artists on the web and bring them to your attention here. It occurred to me that there's one guy I've never done that for in over 300 posts here at the blog and that's Bill Wiist, the man who drew the picture of us that's been on the blog since almost the beginning.


I think Bill and I met many years ago at a convention through a mutual friend of ours...I can't remember for sure. However, it was about 11 years ago or so that met Bill online at Chuck Dixon's message board. Through the interactions on the message board, we became cyber-friends and eventually began working on projects together.

Bill self-published a couple issues of a comic called "The Von Fange Brothers" back in the mid-90s. We briefly relaunched the characters in a variety of places including our very own self-published book. Not only that, I took one of the short stories we did together and produced a movie based on it.  But this isn't about me...


Bill draws, paints, designs, and writes in all sorts of styles.  He has an impressive body of work, some of which you can see at his blog and/or flickr site.

I think it's safe to say that I'm one of Bill's biggest fans and I greatly appreciate him taking the time to paint the Mount Rushmore of Nerdom for us.

One of Bill's most recent paintings started out by a suggestion from me and I think it turned out great! He also did a series of daily sketches that he posted on his blog for awhile that included a really cool shot of Rocky. He's also done artwork for some fake Aurora model kit boxes including one for Doc Savage.

Mount Rushmore of Nerdom: Stan Lee

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Well, who didn't see this one coming?

I thought about making this write-up a simple "'nuff said" but that didn't seem fair.  Marvel Comics revolutionized the way stories in comics were told.  Taking the approach of throwing everything at the wall and seeing what actually stuck, Stan Lee would go on to co-create some of America's most well-known icons in Spider-Man, The Hulk and the Fantastic Four. But he didn't stop there. In fact, the man has never stopped. Still rockin' and rollin', he continues to create and entertain.

By the way, if you're on the Twitter and you're not following @smilinstanlee, then you have someone new you need to go follow.

Painting by William S. Wiist

So that wraps up the Mount Rushmore of Nerdom.  The cool thing about this exercise is that one could do this again and come up with a completely different, yet totally valid list.  There have been over 40 presidents, yet only four faces on the actual Mount Rushmore.  The same goes for Nerdom, there are countless number of people who contributed largely, but I could only choose four faces. Here's a list of just a few of the others considered for the painting:

Jules Verne
H.G. Wells
Isaac Asimov
Lee Falk
Alex Raymond
Jack Kirby
Gene Roddenberry
Buster Crabbe
George Reeves
William Shatner

We want to hear from you now! Who do you not agree with? Who should have been on there that wasn't?

Mount Rushmore of Nerdom: George Lucas

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Say what you will about this entry, (I know I'm no huge fan of his) but his creation of Star Wars completely changed Nerdom. Not only were special effects pushed to the limit like never before, but merchandising the property alone had a huge impact. Nerdom became mainstream in a way like never before. With Star Wars, Lucas presented something old and borrowed in a new light. Toys based on science fiction properties were not new, but with Star Wars, they exploded and continue being made (and remade) to this day. Just the first Star Wars movie could have been enough to earn Lucas a spot here, but for better or worse, he produced more in the Star Wars series and also gave Nerdom another valued contribution in Indiana Jones.

Painting by William S. Wiist

Mount Rushmore of Nerdom: Rod Serling

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His most well-known work is the TV series that began in 1959, The Twilight Zone.  In a time when most science fiction for the screen were campy, hacked out B-movies, Rod Serling put thought into the 92 scripts he wrote for the series.  Modeling intelligent science fiction for the screen, Serling's series was critically successful and showed those who followed him how it could be done. Without Serling, there would be no Star Trek.  And the importance of complex storytelling on half hour and hour long TV has been ever present (albeit not actually appearing as often as we'd like at times).

Painting by William S. Wiist

Mount Rushmore of Nerdom: J.R.R. Tolkien

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While Elves, Dwarves, and Trolls have long been a part of mythology and fables, it was Tolkien who took them in 1954 and gave them a place in Middle-Earth that would prove to have a lasting impact on the fantasy genre like no other author could.  His work has permeated into almost all media favored by Nerds.  Certainly the work itself is something that can speak for itself, but to consider that without him and his stories, we might not have Dungeons & Dragons or even Harry Potter today. That may be a lot of importance to place on one man, but it's hard to argue that without him, Nerdom would be drastically different.

Painting by William S. Wiist
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