Sunday, July 16, 2006

Dead Men Tell No Tales

As many of my editors can attest, my dream project is an ongoing comic book series dealing with pirates in the late 17th Century, which they all tell me is never going to happen. So with a love of pirates, a love of monsters, and a thorough enjoyment of the first "Pirates of the Caribbean" movie "Curse of the Black Pearl," I thought there was no way I wasn't going to love the sequel "Dead Man's Chest." I was wrong.

After a promising beginning, the movie quickly became tedious. The chemistry between the three main characters was nowhere to be seen (not surprising since they spent very little screen time together) and all of the characters had become pretty selfish and unlikable, even for pirates. Davy Jones looked great, but there was a bit of CGI fakery with the rest of his crew that was a bit hard on the eyes. Overall, my biggest complaint is that it wasn't all that much fun.

It did make me think about all the great "Pirates of the Caribbean" models that I had in the 70s. There were seven of them, featuring skeleton pirates in all manner of cruel predicament (as well as a pirate captain who could be built either with flesh, or bone features). They also features "Zap Action" a button triggered rubber band action feature which allowed the pirates to move in a limited replication of the animatronics featured in the Disney theme park rides. Cutlases could be swung, guns drawn, arms pulled off, etc. These things were great, especially with the meticulous paint jobs my father gave them.

Alas, my set of these is no more. My mother didn't throw away my comic books, but she did dispose of all of my models (though my Aurora monsters escaped). The loss of my Pirates of the Caribbean models still pains me today. Eventually I'll probably make the slow, expensive procedure of picking these up off of ebay, but it won't be the same.

In the meantime, all that survives of my own Pirates set is the promotional flyer included with each kit shown here, and the plastic piece of eight, Pirates of the Caribbean logo medallion, and this metal piece of eight medallion my friend Greg brought me back from a trip to Disney World back when we were in 5th Grade.

I've never experienced the ride myself. Every trip I've ever made to the theme parks led to the disappointment of discovering that the attraction was closed for repairs. For more on the Pirates of the Caribbean go here .


Anonymous said...

God, I had totally subsumed all memory of these to a map w/o an "X"-thanks for jarring it. Remember the one that sprung out of the chest with the dagger and was supposed to hit the "x" on the map?-could never get that to work right-dagger always ended up either east or west of Java.
Nick B.

pee money said...

I grumbled like a pirate in gruff agreement with your take on Dead Man's Chest. Hopefully Part 3 will lift its sagging sail.

Kirk D. said...

Those are beautiful. I'd only seen one of them before now. That's one line that I wouldn't mind repros of. That's probably the only way I could afford them.