They just don’t make them like this anymore. The Champions was a short lived (17 issues) series from Marvel Comics that was published from 1975 to 1978. It featured the most unlikely team you would ever imagine (Hercules, Ghost Rider, Black Widow, Iceman, and Angel).

The group was formed when the U.C.L.A. campus was attacked by the Greek God Pluto and his allies Ares and Hippolyta. It’s seems that Iceman and Angel (of the X-Men) were attending UCLA. Ghost Rider just happened to be in town. Hercules was giving a guest lecture in Mythology on campus (I don’t make this stuff up) and Black Widow was applying for a job to teach children how to speak Russian.

They’ve attacked UCLA campus to capture Hercules and force him to marry Hippolyta (Queen of the Amazons) and Pluto intends to marry the goddess Venus, who just happened to be in LA as well. The group bands together at the end of issue #1 and plans to stop Pluto and his plan.

Go ahead, read the issue if you don’t believe me.

This weeks LOST was probably an episode that divided fans. I’ve not been following on-line comments about the show for some time, but I did read a the comments penned by one of my former college professors:

Darlton and company (the writers) had a problem on their hands: they had made a mistake by introducing N and P (I suspect their inclusion was forced on them by the ABC suits, hoping it would increase the show’s international appeal). How to get rid of them? “Expose” did the deed and did it in a self-conscious, self-referential, oroboric (snake-biting-its-own-tail), self-congratulatory way.

On NPR’s On Point this week, Damon Lindelof confesses that the beginning and the end of Lost have not been a problem; the problem is the middle. “Tap dancing,” as Lindelof admits, is fun to watch, but not for long. “Expose” was narratological tap dancing. Self-conscious fun while it lasted. But then he also admitted that the episode might be the best Lost candidate yet for shark-jumping.

Jump the Shark or not, it was an enjoyable episode. it reminded me of an episode of Tales from the Crypt. I don’t think every episode has to be a “mythology” episode to be exciting. It’s great to learn new secrets, but it’s also fun to spend time with the characters, especially Hurley and Sawyer (and watch their interactions).

Yet another reason to love Firefox, and one that I didn’t stumble across until recently.

If there are a few sites that you search regularly, you can add them right into Firefox and access them directly from the address bar.

For example, to search wikipedia, in the address bar, I’ll type w Spider-Man and Firefox will search wikipedia and pull up the results. Just right-click any search box on any site and select “Add a Keyword for this Search.” When the Add Bookmark window pops up, just enter in the Site Name and the Keyword you want to use to when searching.

You can download (right-click and “save as”) the 10-15 Quick Searches I have setup and import them into Firefox. You’ll be ready to go in no time. The ones I use the most, I have set to one or two letters. Simply type CTRL + L to access the address bar and enter your terms and off you go.

Here are the ones I use frequently:

Type “aad <search term >” to search
Acronym Finder Quick Search
Type “acronym <acronym>” to look up what an acronym stands for in Acronym Finder.
Type “am <product name>” to look up an item on Amazon.
Type “d <word>” in the addressbar to perform a dictionary look-up.
Type “dru <search term>” to search
Type “e <item>” to find something up for auction at Ebay.
Flickr Quick Search
Type “f <search term>” to search all the tags, titles and descriptions of images at photo-sharing site Flickr.
Froogle Quick Search
Type “froogle <product name>” to look up a product on shopping search engine Froogle.
Google Maps Quick Search
Type “map <address>” to get a Google map of a street address or location.
Type “g <search term>” in the addressbar to perform a Google search.
Google Image
Type “gi <search term>” to find images that match using Google Image Search.
Type “i <search term>” to search
Ninja Search
Type “n <search term>” to search Ninja
Technorati Quick Search
Type “tech <search term>” to see what weblogs are posting about a topic.
Thesaurus Quick Search
Type “thes <word>” to find words with similar meanings in a thesaurus.
Wikipedia Quick Search
Type “w <search term>” to look it up in Wikipedia.
Type “yt <search term>” to search YouTube

Mister Fantastic
is an inherently cool character (I think). He may be the least powerful member of the Fantastic Four, but he can do so many things with his power, that he’s a fun character to read (or watch). I hope that in the upcoming Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer movie, that the character is played much more like he was at the end of the first film.

His power doesn’t work on film in slow shots. for example, the scene in the first film where he stretched his hand under the door just doesn’t look good. It looks fake. However, in the final battle with Dr. Doom, his stretches and turns into several shapes quickly an rapidly. It was the first time in the film I smiled while watching the character. Hopefully, the new film will feature lots of shapes, bouncing and stretching for Mister Fantastic (read more about the character).

Star Wars Stamps (click for full image) - Coming May 26

It looks like the R2-D2 Mail Boxes were only the beginning. The US Post Office unveiled a Star Wars website, stamp sheet, and pre-paid Express Mail mailers. There’s even an easy trivia contest for a chance to win a trip to L.A. for the Star Wars Celebration IV convention.

The stamps are pretty cool and I’ll definitely get a sheet to save (along with the DC stamps from last year, and the Marvel stamps coming this year). You can also vote for your favorite stamp on the set and it will receive a full sheet release. Out of all of the images, the Darth Vader head-shot looks the best on its own.

Finally, I heard rumors last year that Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope would be re-released this year in honor of the 30th anniversary. I want to say it was going to be converted to digital 3-D, but I may not be remembering correctly. Regardless, I hope it comes to theaters in some form of wide release this year. Nothing would put a bigger smile on my face than sitting in the theater, 30 years later, watching one of my favorite movies with my son sitting right next to me.