Harry’s Razors Review

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Derek: Welcome back, Mark! The holiday season is hitting its stride, and that means one thing: our thoughts turn to the awful hair that grows unceasingly from the male face. It looks like the ol’ Chinfest is going literal this time as we review Harry’s Razors. Are you familiar with Harry’s, Mark?

Mark: Of course. Those are the guys that bought a German factory and had it shipped over brick-by-brick so they could employ American workers, right? Good to see the promise of renewed American manufacturing being fulfilled—nobody makes things that cut and slice quite like us Americans!

Derek: Something like that, I’m sure! Anyhoo, I thought it might be fun to test out some of their fine products and review them. We’ve reviewed one movie already, so it’s probably time to expand our horizons.

Mark: Or is it stuff that blows up good that Americans make best? Well, it’s stuff that kills efficiently, at any rate. And I can’t wait to try out Harry’s Truman Set, which includes an ergonomic handle, two blade cartridges, and Harry’s own shave gel. I got the handle in olive green—one of four available colors—because it seems like the sturdiest choice, and I plan to use my razor a lot. Also, I am interested in the allusion to Harry Truman, the only human in history to authorize the use of nuclear weapons, and he was also known to shave, I believe.

Product shot 2 processedDerek: For those not familiar with Harry’s, it’s one of the growing number of direct-to-consumer producers that have emerged in the last few years that offer everything from cosmetics to mattresses to clothing. Companies marketing basic products to men seem to be prominent, something that I suppose stems from the notion that men hate shopping in actual stores for things they don’t like to buy but have to. Like underwear. According to prevailing social norms, I need it, but I hate buying it. I certainly don’t like going somewhere just to purchase it, and honestly, I’d rather wear the same underwear for a decade or more. You can take the unpluralized “underwear” however you want—the point is, I don’t like to buy it.

Razors are probably the same way for a lot of men. I certainly don’t spend much time thinking about it. I last bought razors two years ago when I got an entire crate of Schick Hydro 5 blades for $6 at CostCo. I was down to the last cartridge, so I figured I either had to go to CostCo again or order something off the Internet. And since those were the only options I could think of, and going to CostCo is right below “owning parrots” on my list of things I really don’t want, I tried the Internet.

Mark: Speaking of the Internet, I’m looking at Harry’s website right now, and it looks like that factory is still in Germany. I’m a little disappointed, but if there’s anyone better than America at fashioning implements of death, it’s those crafty Germans. Or, as they say in ol’ Deutschland, the ausgekocht Germans! Even their language is designed to bludgeon one into submission.

What I’m really looking forward to here, though, is a close shave for a decent price, and I have to say that the price, at least, looks pretty good: $15 for the Truman Set with free shipping. I think we should get started on our test!

Park bench_processedDerek: I agree! As you know, Mark, I’m a stickler for an authentic and controlled testing environment. And I’m taking Harry’s woolly mammoth logo seriously—it implies that their product represents a manly, natural process for shaving with German steel, just like our Paleolithic forebears used. Since I don’t have a cave or animal-skin shelter handy, I’m using the next best thing for our trial: a bench in my backyard. I figure this is a pretty good approximation of the male shaving experience through history.

So I’ll be living here for the next five days, shaving every morning with my Truman model razor, my Harry’s shave gel, and my will to survive.

Oh, and before we proceed, just a production note: readers will be able to track our shaving progress with the handy photos we’ve provided. You’ve got a healthy face-full of hair, Mark, so I’ll be interested to see what Harry’s can do for you.

Mark: One of my favorite photos! Let’s go! Continue reading

Magnificent Bastards of the Apocalypse: Chapter 1

IMG_2183Please enjoy this fully fumigated and strained presentation of the complete Chapter 1 of Magnificent Bastards of the Apocalypse. And don’t forget to read the Prologue, which provides essential indoctrination and induces the requisite state of wretchedness.


Chapter 1

It was Scavengeday, second day of the week, so Super, Flapman, and Gibson emerged from the Grotto to see what goodies they could find or haggle for or steal out in the ruined world. The entrance to the Grotto was hidden under a collapsed parking garage near the city’s waterfront. Or at least what used to be the waterfront of what used to be the city. There really was no city, per se, anymore. Nor was there an ocean now. Instead, there was the Cromulent Zone—stretching from the entire eastern third of the hemisphere and continuing across the dry ocean basin, until it reached its limits against the Atlantic Mountains—the only portion of the Earth that was not utterly uninhabitable. They were in the northern part of the ravaged planet, and though they had heard rumors that some life continued its miserable existence south of the wobbly equator, they thought it was probably nonsense. Continue reading

Mini-Chinfest! “The Shape of Water”

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From Guillermo del Toro, creator of sci-fi horror classics like Pan’s Labyrinth, Hellboy, and Pacific Rim and executive producer of Puss in Boots and player of Bullboy #2 in something called Bullfighter comes The Shape of Water. Set during the Cold War, it’s the story of a woman (Sally Hawkins) who, while working in a secret government laboratory/fortress, meets an aquatic creature (Doug Jones) that she falls in love with because it really likes eggs, and who doesn’t like eggs? It also stars Michael Shannon, who plays self-righteous, psychotic zealots better than anybody other than Roy Moore.*

And speaking of depraved sex, there are pretty heavy overtones of interspecies nookie here, or at least some interspecies hot-tubbing. Sounds like social commentary to me! Does this make it groundbreaking Oscar-bait? Probably not, unless you thought The Human Centipede was a sensitive treatment of polyamory, and if that’s the case, you should never watch another movie.

With all the water and probably other fluids in this movie, there are some dominant conceits to be on the lookout for. Metaphor alert: the title of the movie appears to be an allusion to water’s shape being defined by that which contains it. Unless it’s a gas or a solid, in which case there’s a lot more latitude. Can water be a plasma? Not sure the molecular bonds would hold together. Anyway, it probably means love is like water, and the fish-man lives in water, and the woman loves the fish-man, and the fish-man loves eggs.

The Shape of Water hits theaters today, and you should watch the trailer first. And you should probably watch Hellboy first, too, since Doug Jones plays a remarkably similar fish-man in that movie and its sequel, which you can skip. 

*Clarification: the Doug Jones named above is not the Doug Jones running against Roy Moore. Rather, it is the Doug Jones who often plays fish in movies. Roy Moore was invoked only to illustrate depravity and does not appear in The Shape of Water as far as we know.

Chapter 1 Preview

Chapter 1 (excerpt)Please enjoy this preview of MBOTA: Chapter 1, suitable for a festive weekend of consumption that will hurry our world on to sweet oblivion. And don’t forget to read the Prologue, which is like Chapter Zero but with an earthier flavor.


It was Scavengeday, second day of the week, so Super, Flapman, and Gibson emerged from the Grotto to see what goodies they could find or haggle for or steal out in the ruined world. The entrance to the Grotto was hidden under a collapsed parking garage near the city’s waterfront. Or at least what used to be the waterfront of what used to be the city. There really was no city, per se, anymore. Nor was there an ocean now. Instead, there was the Cromulent Zone—stretching from the entire eastern third of the hemisphere and continuing across the dry ocean basin, until it reached its limits against the Atlantic Mountains—the only portion of the Earth that was not utterly uninhabitable. They were in the northern part of the ravaged planet, and though they had heard rumors that some life continued its miserable existence south of the wobbly equator, everyone knew that was absurd.  Continue reading

Thor: Ragnarok Review

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Derek: So, here’s our very first Half-Baked Review Chinfest, which I am very excited about! This is a chance for us to bring our unique take on movies to the public. Personally, I think we took the prudent course by letting the Internet mature for twenty years or so before launching this column. No point in rushing, right Mark?

Mark: Right, we’re like a properly aged cheese. But hopefully better smelling.

Derek: Well, if we’re cheeses, then I call Emmentaler, which like me, is Swiss and smells of fresh-cut hay! And speaking of cheese, let’s jump right into the review of Thor: Ragnarok, the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s third foray into the world of Asgard and Midgard and a lot of planets and dimensions. Continue reading

Prologue

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“Flapman, tell me the story.”

Super Patriot Boy, he who sought the story, lay still in the narrow cavity of his BrixDyne Corp. FrostiSnooz Model 6 sleep/storage crèche. The crèche was a gleaming white cylinder, and in the dark room, its industrial precision jarred against the organic crags and ridges of the stone walls. His request was spoken to the cool, still air, and he had no way of knowing if it had been heard. A few green and yellow status lights along one side of the interior of the capsule, indicating that the occupant was technically alive, cast a warm glow on Super’s head, pale face, and bare chest. Continue reading