Do you feel the need? The need… for speed.

Hello friends! Here at the Mark and Steve Video Game Testing Center, driving games are often ignored in favor of games that are actually fun. Midnight Club: Los Angeles, however, piqued our interest. We posted about it awhile back, but since then, Kotaku has written a nice hands-on impression of the game and a second trailer has been released!

A new release date in October has been solidified, pushed back from September and the L.A. in the game is looking even more accurate than before. We personally are looking forward to reenacting the many accidents at the cursed corner of La Brea and Fountain.

How many L.A. landmarks can you spot whizzing by in the new trailer?

Arclight, Dark Knight

Hello, friends! We were on hand for The Dark Knight midnight movie madness at the spectacular Cineramadome/Arclight! Crowds abound and news crews were there to point bright lights and cameras at them with the intent to annoy and interview those of us in line. There was also some kind of butt-tasting ice tea drink being bandied about, but the price for tasting it was to pretend on camera that the vile liquid was indeed delicious. It was not.

Click for more pics and snide remarks after the jizz-ump

Save a life, for less!

Hello, friends. This is a rough time for pets. Whenever the economy takes a dip, dogs and cats get treated as ballast on the sinking ship of a family on the brink of financial ruin. L.A. shelters are overfull and the list of innocent animals marked for the big sleep is getting bigger and bigger.

July 4th is another factor, fireworks go off, dogs get scared, run off and wind up in a shelter.

L.A. Animal Services is having a huge, super-reduced fee, Adopt-A-Thon this weekend:

Saturday July 19th, 8am-5pm & Sunday July 20th, 11am-5pm

Cats & Kittens will be $28 (usually $68)

Dogs & Puppies will be $43 (usually $91)

includes: microchip, spay/neuter, vaccines, license (when applicable)

All six La City Animal Service Centers will be participating in this Adoption event. There are over 1000 dogs and 700 adoptable cats that need homes.

Click here to check out the animals and find out where to pick them up!

Won’t eat prunes again!

British rockers, The Who are playing a private show at the Orpheum to promote the coming of Mark and Steve’s new favorite game; Rock Band 2! Also, you can download a Best of the Who song pack for Rock Band right now!

From Reuters:

The party and concert, organized by the game’s developer Harmonix Music Systems and publisher MTV Games, will take place at the 82-year-old Orpheum Theatre, which holds about 2,000 people.

The Who’s 1971 anthem “Won’t Get Fooled Again” is among the 58 tracks on the set list of “Rock Band,” which was released to great acclaim late last year.

UPDATE 7/17/2008: Brian Crecente, from awesome gaming site, Kotaku, attended the concert and posted lots of pictures, impressions and even some videos here!

From his article:

Later Townshend said that everyone should buy their children the new Aerosmith Guitar Hero bundle, then a second later added, oh, that’s the other one.

Awesome

Odd L.A. Spotlight: Andrew Goldenberg

Hello friends! As you know we’re no strangers to Batman, and all things DC, so we’re totally stoked about the Dark Knight, coming out this Friday! So stoked, in fact, that we’re attending a midnight showing at the Arclight, an IMAX screening about twelve hours later and then various viewings with other friends and family over the weekend! That in mind, who has two thumbs, lives in L.A. and is even more stoked on the new Batman movie than us?

This guy!

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wUPBgYeanZ0[/youtube]

Who is this masked, singing wonder and where did he get those wonderful toys?

His name is Andrew Goldenberg, and we want you to do us a favor. We want you to tell all your friends about him.

Click here to read an exclusive interview with this extraordinary L.A. denizen and see even more videos

The heat is on!

Driving by the Beverly Hills Police Department this morning, the Mark and Steve surveillance system picked up something very odd… you know those statues of owls people put up to scare birds away so the birds don’t poop everywhere? Well, it seems the BHPD have adopted a similar tactic and have created these decoy police cars to frighten and dissuade common criminals, speed demons and any other non-law-abiders… they are a cowardly and superstitious lot, are they not?

Our question to you is, do you think it really works? Sure, a statue might fool our feathered friends, but have any of you ever mistakenly asked a mannequin how it got those rock-hard abs? Would a clearly fake police car with some eerie stickers on the windows make you think twice about gunning it on a yellow?

As always, click to have a closer look

Crazians!

Hello friends! Do you like art? How do you feel about Asians? What about crazy Asians, or Crazians? We here at the Mark and Steve Center are feverishly pro-Crazian and can’t help but urge you all to attend an awesome art show at the always entertaining World of Wonder, located at:

6650 Hollywood blvd. Suite 400

Hollywood, California 90028

Opening night is this Friday, 7/11 from 8:00pm-12:00am take advantage of the free drinks and enjoy some art!

Too Drunk to… What?! (NSFW)

So Steve managed to land himself a starring role in the latest Buckcherry music video called “Too Drunk…”! Now I know what you’re thinking: “Too Drunk?! Isn’t that a Dead Kennedy’s song?” Well, yes it is. But this particular song has nothing to do with that song… Though, both songs deal with issues of being too drunk to perform sexual acts, the difference is this song happens to have a video to go along with it. And it just so happens, Steve is the above mentioned “Drunk” person…

Watch Steve’s music video debut after the jump!

SPACED in Los Angeles!

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_P7dileY9sY[/youtube]

Hello Friends! If you go and check out Spaced Invasion, you’ll find some details for two awesome Spaced-centric events happening in Los Angeles! There’s a signing on the 23rd at Jay and Silent Bob’s Secret Stash – West, and a free screening of some choice episodes at the Arclight followed by a Q&A with Simon Pegg, Jessica Hynes and Edgar Wright moderated by Kevin Smith!

What’s Spaced? You mean, you don’t know? Understandable, I suppose, because the  series hasn’t been available stateside, until now! On July 22nd, you and all your friends ought to make haste to your local DVD retailer, throw down some dollars and rush home to experience some of the funniest TV ever! Here’s a more thorough description from the press release:

Spaced: The Complete Series, a 3-disc set from BBC Video, features all 14 surreal episodes of the award-winning show, described by Pegg as “a cross between The Simpsons, The X-Files and Northern Exposure.” Boasting over eight hours of content, the DVD set features bonus material including the original commentary from the UK release plus all-new commentary from Quentin Tarantino (Reservoir Dogs, Kill Bill), Kevin Smith (Clerks, Dogma), Matt Stone (South Park, Team America: World Police), Bill Hader (Superbad, SNL), Patton Oswalt (King of Queens, Ratatouille) and Diablo Cody (Oscar®-winning writer of Juno).

Bikes on the freeway, huh? How about the sidewalk!?

Picture nabbed from planet pooks

Hello friends! We know a more than a few of you reading this will go out of their way to ride a bike anywhere and everywhere they can. Even places that seem crazy! Attempting to survive while perched atop a frame of hollow metal with some wheels stuck on and conquer mountains, forests, deserts and even the freeway!

But more dangerous, more foolhardy and just plain more inconvenient for everyone involved… are those riders who choose to ride on the sidewalk!

Click here to read on!

Michael Turner dead at 37

Hello friends, Mark here. Last night, an amazing artist, Kung-Fu master, L.A. resident and genuinely swell guy lost a long battle with cancer. I got to meet Michael a few times post-cancer diagnosis and he was always really excitable and pleasant to be around, even when he was pushing his way through a dense crowd while on crutches.

Excerpt from an article on Comic Book Resources:

Turner is an artist best known for his work on books like “Witchblade,” where he got his start in comics, moving on to titles such as “Black Panther,” “Superman/Batman” and his very own creator owned series “Fathom” and “Soulfire” through his publishing company Aspen Comics. A prolific artist, he’s done work for both DC Comics and Marvel Comics, and has provided covers to some of the best-known comics published in the last ten years, including Brad Meltzer’s “Identity Crisis.”

In 2000, Turner was diagnosed with cancer — chondrosarcoma in the right pelvis, which resulted in his loosing his hip, 40% of his pelvis and three pounds of bone. What followed was 9 months of radiation. The cancer has gone into remission and returned multiple times since he was first diagnosed.

We’ve lost quite few, young and seemingly able-bodied comic book artists lately. This high mortality rate causing my wife no small amount of concern. I reassured her that my general sloth and steady diet of puddings nearly guarantees me a long life as a grumpy nerd.

If a tree falls in Disneyland, does it makes sound?

Hello friends! Yesterday, Mark and Steve made the trek out to Disneyland to enjoy the midnight show Wall-E with some friends at Downtown Disney. After trying out the amazing new ride in California Adventure, we decided to check out the new Indiana Jones live action show where we discovered a crowd had gathered around another brand new attraction; a fallen tree branch!

The rather large branch fell right in the middle New Orleans area and Cast Members were busily diverting traffic, pointing into the air, blathering into walkie-talkies and eventually some guys with chainsaws came and began chopping the tree up.

Click here for some more pictures and speculation as to what caused the incident!

Writing in L.A.

Hello friends! Dan Harmon, one of the founders of the awesome Channel101, screenwriter on the brilliant Monster House, co-creator of the Sarah Silverman Program and just all-around awesome dude, recently revealed what it’s like to write for Dreamworks Animation.

Excerpt from the original post on the Channel101 forums:

My hats off to anyone that can write a Dreamworks Animation film. They have a unique process.

First they storyboard the entire film. That is the first step. Not kidding. No writers, no script, just a story, and an entire film drawn on pieces of paper.

Then Katzenberg watches an animatic of the boards and says, surprisingly, “this needs a lot of work. You have a month.”

Then they hire their first writer. And spend that month changing as much of the storyboards as they can, which is about 20 to 30 percent.

If the 30 percent change isn’t the right kind of change, people get fired. Maybe the director, maybe the writer, maybe both.

Sometimes, only the writer gets fired and an additional director is hired to help out. It all depends on who is better – at pointing a finger with one hand while covering their own ass with the other.