Friday, December 31, 2021

Old School Lane's Favorite Videos

 Happy New Year, everyone! 2021 was a year where Old School Lane had its ups and downs, but the ups it had were some of my favorite moments. All throughout the month of December, we've been looking back on the 10 years of Old School Lane. But now, we conclude it with looking back on my favorite videos. Technically, I didn't start making full time videos until 2015, but the ones I've written, edited, and starred in have been some of my proudest accomplishments as a content creator. I had replaced blogging for video work and I didn't look back. So, with that said, here are my favorite videos from Old School Lane.

Top 10 Nicktoons That Need Comic Book Adaptations ft. Comic Uno

Originally posted on the Old School Lane website on April 22, 2015 and uploaded on YouTube on June 18, 2015.

The videos that Kevin and I did were simple, unscripted, and required no additional clips or editing. But this was my first attempt of doing a full blown video. Plus it was a countdown and a collaboration which, again, my first time doing it. In honor of the Invader ZIM comics being announced, I had thought of another Nicktoons that deserved to have comic book adaptations and I decided to call in an expert of comics, my friend Kat "Comic Uno" Calamia, to help me out. Since then, some of our predictions came true. There would later on be Rugrats and The Legend of Korra comics coming out a few years later. I have become a lot better in my videos since I posted this, but I still look back on this one fondly as my starting point. To learn more about how Kat and I did it, we did a commentary video together.

Why Nickelodeon's Thanksgiving Fest Was Historically Significant to the Channel?
Originally uploaded on November 26, 2015 on YouTube.

This would be my first analytical video on YouTube looking back on an obscure Nickelodeon Thanksgiving special from the 80's. While I did do a blog review on it a few years prior, I had since rewatched it and found it to be a bit charming despite its rough animation spots (except for the Thanksgiving segments by Joey Ahlbum), spotty voice acting, and simplistic storylines. I did research on it and found out it was more important to Nickelodeon than I realized. I then contacted Joey for further details on his experience working on it years before I invited him for an interview on Casual Chats. I don't watch this special compared to the other Thanksgiving specials on Nickelodeon, but I appreciate its place in the channel's history.

The Weinerville Chanukah Special Discussion/Review
Originally uploaded on December 20, 2015 on YouTube.

It was the 20th anniversary of Nickelodeon's first Hanukkah special and no one was doing a video on it because whenever people think of "Nickelodeon" and "Hanukkah", they immediately think of the Rugrats Hanukkah special. I wanted to change that and focus on one of my favorite underrated Nickelodeon shows Weinerville. Out of the 3 Weinerville specials, this was my favorite for how wacky it was telling a "modern" version of the origin tale of Hanukkah using potato latke aliens as the Jewish people and aliens led by their dorky leader as the Maccabees. It was great to highlight this overlooked gem during the Hanukkah season.

What Makes As Told by Ginger a Groundbreaking, Yet Overlooked Nicktoon?
Originally uploaded on January 24, 2016 on YouTube.

On October 2015, I had did my first themed month of videos looking back on the 2000 Nicktoon As Told by Ginger in honor of its 15th anniversary. I had wanted to do my final video of that themed month talking about why I felt the show was overlooked and underappreciated despite the groundbreaking things it achieved. When I had completed my first draft, I was unsatisfied with it and set it aside working on other projects until I was ready to complete this script. After months of research and hypothetical statements, I was ready to post my video a few months later. To this day, this is still my favorite video I've ever posted and one I'm still proud of.

From Pilot to Final Product: The Adventures of Pete & Pete
Originally uploaded on February 14, 2016 on YouTube.

Out of all the shows I've covered on From Pilot to Final Product, The Adventures of Pete & Pete is still to this day my favorite one. I looked back on the show's pilot episode on its pilot season in honor of both Valentine's Day and on the episode's 25th anniversary and talked about what stuck around and what changed when the show got greenlit for a show. While it wasn't as drastically different compared to other pilots I've covered such as Nick Arcade or Adventure Time, it was still on its early run when the humor and characters were just getting their footing. However, this is where it all started and it would get better and better. While my coverage of the shows I would be doing later would get better, I still feel the most proud with this one.

Should We Say Goodbye to Halcyon Days?
Originally uploaded on May 23, 2016 on YouTube.

This was a very personal video that I did when I turned 30. It was a reflection on how I was feeling at the time and trying to have the perfect balance of doing videos while at the same time trying to be more like an adult. In reality, it was a very tough time in my life. I was working at a dead end job, I was living at home with my parents, I wasn't dating anyone, and I had hated where my life was going. But I had to remember that what I was doing was what I loved and didn't want to quit. Since then, I'm going to school for broadcast journalism, I'm currently engaged, and I'm the happiest I've ever been. Looking back on that video, I can't believe that was me. I definitely need to an update video. In the meanwhile, I did a commentary video on it if you wish to check it out.

How Did Doug Become Influential with Its Simplicity? 
Originally uploaded on August 23, 2016 on YouTube.

During 3 Original Nicktoons Month, I did an analytical video on the 1991 Nicktoon Doug and talked about how its simple presentation would later be the foundation of the slice of life cartoon genre that was prominent throughout the 90's and 00's. In recent years, the show has generated a lot of hate from the Internet calling it "boring", "bland", and "underwhelming". But I defended Doug talking about how it was one of the most important animated shows ever made.

The History of Hey Arnold: The Jungle Movie
Originally uploaded on December 13, 2016 on YouTube.

This was originally suppose to wrap up Hey Arnold! Month to celebrate the show's 20th anniversary, but due to my dad being at the hospital, I had delayed the video until months later. When I heard the news that Hey Arnold: The Jungle Movie was going to premiere on Nickelodeon after a 15 year wait, I had decided to do an analysis video talking about how it got cancelled back in 2004 and how the fanbase made it come back to life. I looked back at old archived fan forum posts, newspaper articles, videos, podcasts, and interviews to make sure it was deeply covered. Years after I posted it, this is a video I'm very proud of.

Is Disney's Doug Really That Bad?
Originally uploaded on April 22, 2017 on YouTube

This topic was actually a request from my listeners when I was doing a livestream trying to help the website Manic Expression raise money for a crowdfunding campaign. It took me months to watch the episodes of both the Nickelodeon and Disney version of Doug, go over its pros and cons, and Doug's First Movie. I wanted to do a detailed video talking about Disney's Doug because all I've ever seen when people talking about it was "it wasn't as good as the Nickelodeon version" and that was it. I wanted to showcase Disney's Doug in an elaborate way that I had not seen before and tried to give the show a proper chance. However, only 2/3 of the series was available when I first saw it. But now, the entire series is on Disney+ and I need to go back and give it a proper watch. 

The Definitive Kwanzaa Special: Rugrats vs. The Proud Family
Originally uploaded on December 31, 2017 on YouTube.

This was a topic that I really needed to give the proper research and respect to since I'm not African American. Before I had watched both of these episodes, I had watched the official Kwanzaa documentary The Black Candle to get context on the history, 7 days and their meanings, and significance of the holiday. Then I watched them twice and wrote down how they were as both stand alone episodes and Kwanzaa episodes. Even though I didn't celebrate Kwanzaa, I really wanted to give this video the respect it deserves since it was a holiday that doesn't get a lot of specials. I'm very proud on how it turned out.

A Lookback into Arnold's Christmas
Originally uploaded on January 1, 2019 on YouTube

Out of the holiday analytical videos I've done, this one is my all time favorite. Not too surprising since Arnold's Christmas is my all time favorite Nickelodeon holiday episode. I did a ton of research on the Vietnam War and the aftermath, doing character studies on Helga, Gerald, and Mr. Hyunh, and how the atmosphere and music fits the special perfectly. I had loved doing this video and wanted to give it the proper time and effort to make it as perfect as possible. 

Heroic Gem or Junk: Cybersix
Originally uploaded on October 8, 2019 on YouTube.

This was the first video based on a series of videos where I look at obscure or overlooked superhero movies, shows, comics, video games, etc. and I am super, super proud of it. It took me months of research to learn everything about Cybersix and it was fascinating. I talked about the pros, cons, why I felt the show was overlooked, and my overall thoughts on it. It was great giving attention to a show I felt was underrated and underappreciated. 

The Pros, Cons, and Aftermath of Hey Arnold: The Jungle Movie

Years after Hey Arnold: The Jungle Movie premiered on Nickelodeon, Arun Mehta from The Arun Mehta Show and I collaborated together to talk about the pros, cons, and aftermath of a film that fans had fought for for 15 years. The pros and cons were easy to cover, but the aftermath took way longer to release because Nickelodeon went through so many changes that I didn't want to miss anything and had to release updates to make it less outdated. It may had taken a long time, but we were really happy with the final product. Another one I'm very proud of doing.

Media Hall of Fame: 4 Stories on How Fans Became Integral to their Favorite Animated Shows
Originally uploaded on March 5, 2021 on YouTube.

The first video on a series where I highlight something that deserves to be praised, I covered 4 stories where the fans were so passionate about their favorite shows that they officially became a part of it. It was partially inspired by the animation community being very hateful that I wanted to highlight the good things that they've done. Then I heard the news of Half Shy, a fan of Adventure Time, writing a song for one of the specials for Adventure Time: Distant Lands and I had to do a video on it. I looked up a few other stories and put it together. Had I done this video a few months later, I would have easily placed Rebecca Rose on the video where she did analytical videos on The Owl House on YouTube and now she's the production associate of the show itself. But I'm still very proud on how it turned out.

That's it for now! Thank you so much for being around celebrating 10 years of Old School Lane. Here's hoping that 2022 would be the start of some great things. Until then, happy new year!


Tuesday, December 21, 2021

Old School Lane Casual Chats Episode 175: Old School Lane's 10th Anniversary Livestream

In this episode of Casual Chats, Patricia and various special guests reflect on 10 years of Old School Lane, play games, read two rough draft scripts of As Told by Ginger, and look into the future.

Saturday, December 18, 2021

Old School Lane's Favorite Collaborations

 It's week 3 of our celebration of 10 years at Old School Lane! Today, we're going to lookback on my collaborations: both in video and podcasts. It's not very often I collaborate with someone else's podcast or YouTube channel, but when I do, it's been a very fun experience getting to put my insights, feedback. or opinions on whatever the topic is. Or maybe I would lend my voice, video clip, or writing in something that would be a small or large part of a big project. So, these are my favorite collaborations I've been a part of.

Manic Expression Podcast Plays

When the website Manic Expression was first forming, the founder James Daniel Walsh had an idea of collaborating with the members of the site to do podcast plays written, edited, and presented by them. I helped write in one of the first podcast plays and we had it as a double feature. I even acted as one of the characters in the first podcast play. Since then, I have performed in 10 podcast plays and had wrote or co-wrote 3 of them. They have been a wonderful experience and I've had a great time being able to not only perform alongside my friends and colleagues, but to write stories that were personal to me at the time. 

TV Trash Episode 235: The Little Mermaid Animated Series

Chris "RowdyC" Moore of TV Trash and myself had met up at Disney World together and had decided to collaborate with each other looking at the animated series of the 1989 Disney animated film The Little Mermaid. Out of the animated series based on Disney films, this is one that doesn't really get discussed on and we talked about what makes it an overlooked gem. Originally, this was supposed to be a double collaboration where I was going to be doing a review on Phineas & Ferb, but it fell through. Maybe I can finally put it together for next year.

Yesterday's Capers: Doug vs. The Weekenders & Hey Arnold
Premiered on July 2020 on Apple Podcasts and Spotify.

Back around March 2020, the hosts of the podcast Yesterday's Capers Abdullah Moallin and Paul talked about As Told by Ginger vs. Braceface & Daria. As someone who was a huge As Told by Ginger and Daria fan, I gave my compliment and asked if I could guest star in one of their episodes. They interviewed me a few months later and then brought me back for an episode where we compared Doug and The Weekenders and gave a full discussion on Hey Arnold. I had seen Doug multiple times over the years, but I had never given The Weekenders a full watch. So, I had watched half of the series and had gotten myself prepared to talk about them with Abdullah and Paul. We had a fun time comparing both shows with their similarities, differences, and which one we felt presented itself the best. Then we gushed about Hey Arnold.  

Live and Wired

Around October 2013, Decker Shado and That Long Haired Creepy Guy were doing a series of collaborative videos where they were forced to do reviews together. The plot twist was that Kevin and I were responsible for it. While Kevin and I would do many other podcasts with Creepy, Decker was busy with his own endeavors on his channel and we wouldn't connect again until doing Live & Wired a few years later. Live & Wired was a bi-weekly news livestream where Creepy, Decker, and I would look up news on horror, action, sci-fi, fantasy, or video games and talk about them. It was a ton of fun. That is until 2020 when COVID-19 struck and I had to step down when my family was heavily affected by it. That was when Kat took over and did a great job replacing me until I recovered from my personal problems. That is until Decker decided to put it on hiatus. Nonetheless, the two years we did Live & Wired was a ton of fun and we had a blast doing it. 

We're in Between

In collaboration with Casey and Ashli from The Friday Night Nicktoons Podcast, we did a weekly As Told by Ginger podcast called We're in Between. Not only did we watch, analyze, and rate each episode and TV movie, but we also invited special guests who had worked on the show to talk about their personal experiences working on it. Almost 5 years after we had started it, it's still one that I hold very proudly.

Arun & Patricia

Shortly after I had interviewed Arun Mehta from The Arun Mehta Show, he invited me to be a co-host on his podcast series. Overtime, the other co-hosts had left for one reason or another until it was the two of us left. When we began dating, we rebranded it as Arun & Patricia combining both shows together and talking about various pop culture news. We've talked about movies, TV shows, video games, and other bits of news we found amusing or dumb. I look forward to doing the show with Arun every week covering these fun bits of news based on topics we love. Doing it with the person you love is also another big reason why.

Showdown at the Movies: Hocus Pocus vs. Ernest Scared Stupid.

The most recent collaboration I have done was with Alex DeCourville's podcast Showdown at the Movies where he invites a special guest talking about two similar movies. We had talked about Hocus Pocus and Ernest Scared Stupid in honor of the Halloween celebration, but it had came out a little bit late. We had compared both movies and talked about its strengths, weaknesses, and more. I had done another podcast episode with him, so I'll share it on my social media when it's released. But the episodes we've done together have been fun.

That's all for now! Tune in this coming Tuesday, December 21, for the Old School Lane 10th Anniversary Livestream. Then afterwards will be the last episode of Casual Chats for 2021 discussing about the Disney Post-Renaissance Era with Chris "RowdyC" Moore, and my last blog article talking about Old School Lane's Favorite Videos. Hope to see you then.


Sunday, December 12, 2021

Old School Lane's Favorite Podcast Interviews

 It's still December which means celebrating the 10th anniversary of Old School Lane by going back to the decade's worth of content and looking back on what have been the works I've been proud to post. Last week, we talked about my favorite episodes of Casual Chats. This week, we'll be talking about the podcast interviews. While I did do a Top 10 list on this topic 5 years ago, a lot more have come out since then. With that said, it's time to look back on my favorite podcast interviews.

Old School Lane Casual Chats Episode 14: Interview with Marc Weiner

Originally uploaded on July 10, 2013 on YouTube.

Marc Weiner was the creator, producer, co-writer, and actor behind the 1993 Nickelodeon variety show Weinerville. Kevin and I had interviewed him a year prior on the Old School Lane blog back when we did blog interviews. But we decided to have him back on the show since Weinerville was celebrating its 20th anniversary. Kevin and I loved Weinerville as kids and having Marc on the show voicing as Dottie, Socko, Zip, Boney, and more for us was such a treat. Not to mention answering our questions was also great too. Weinerville is a polarizing show for a lot of people, but for those who grew up with zany variety shows like Pee-wee's Playhouse would fit right in watching it. Marc has been really supporting at Old School Lane for years such as cameoing in Halcyon Days and even sending Kevin and I Weinerville items around the holidays when we first interviewed him. He has been nothing but kind and loving and we are very happy that we've kept in touch with him. Sadly, the audio quality doesn't hold up. Hopefully we can remedy that with a follow up podcast interview someday.

Turtle Talk Episode 3: Interview with Renae Jacobs
Originally uploaded on July 25, 2013 on YouTube.

Kevin and I had a short lived podcast where we covered Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles news, episode recaps of the 2012 Nickelodeon series, and interviews with people associated with the franchise. Our first interview was with the original voice actress behind April O'Neal, Renae Jacobs. We had asked her about working on TMNT and her other works. Again, the audio quality doesn't hold up, but Kevin and I still had a blast doing it and are still proud of it. 

Old School Lane Casual Chats Episode 26: Interview with Nathaniel "GeminiLaser" Hoover
Originally uploaded on January 13, 2014

I don't watch a lot of Let's Plays on YouTube, surprisingly. I tried my hand on watching Game Grumps back when Egoraptor and JonTron first started, but it didn't gel with me very well. Even Arun tried to show me a clip show of their best moments, but I found some of their jokes to be unfunny and even tasteless. So, it was a complete surprise when back around 2013 when I was a part of the PlaysStation Let's Play channel alongside Tristen, Nick, and Tom and I was playing Mega Man 2, I had decided to watch some videos of the series to refresh myself. I had found a YouTube channel named GeminiLaser that was doing a Let's Play series on the classic Mega Man games with some great tips on playing the game with utilizing the weapons, going in an unorthodox direction by going in reverse order or random orders on the stages, having clever or terrible puns and jokes, singing, and thoughts on the games in terms of the level design, weapons, music, and gameplay. I then discovered his content on the GameCola website where he would be talking about other video game thoughts on blog articles, podcasts, vlogs, and video reviews. I then invited Nathaniel to the podcast and he told me about his love of Mega Man, doing his Let's Plays, doing his blog Exfanding Your Horizons, and more. He was so hilarious and a very nice guy to talk to. I would invite him to do the Legacy of Star Trek podcast and Halcyon Days, which was a great treat to experience.

Old School Lane Casual Chats Episode 27: Interview with Lindsey "Little Miss Gamer" Briggs 
Originally uploaded on January 28, 2014 on YouTube.

This would be the first of four interviews I would conduct based on my major influences of my content creation work on the Internet. Lindsey Briggs a.k.a. Little Miss Gamer would cover her personal favorite retro video games on the site PBC Productions in a calm, sweet, and comforting persona in a time when angry ranting personas were populating the reviewing community. When I had reached her, she had retired from posting videos due to dedicating her time working as a puppeteer for the Jim Henson Company, marrying Chad Williams from PBC Productions, and having a family. We talked about her time doing work at PBC Productions, her decision to quit content creation, and whether or not she would introduce her children to video games. We even met in person a few years later in person when I visited New York to see my family and friends. Since then, she and Chad have started their own puppet company WonderSpark Puppets, they do a podcast together talking about being parents and their puppet work, and Lindsey recently became the voice of Foley in the Sesame Street podcast Foley and Friends on Audible. 

Old School Lane Casual Chats Episode 30: Interview with Jim Jinkins
Originally uploaded on June 4, 2014 on YouTube

When Kevin and I went to the Slimed! event in New York City, we met many former Nickelodeon actors, show creators, and composers including the creator of Doug, Jim Jinkins. We had gotten a hold of him and asked him questions about Doug, Pinwheel, and learned about the rejected pitches for a Judy spin off series, and how he would continue the series if Disney allowed him to. Kevin and I were huge fans of Doug when we were kids and still think that it's a great animated series that deserves more credit that the Internet gives it. Jim and I would talk again a few years later during the 25th anniversary of the 3 original Nicktoons. 

Turtle Talk Episode 12: Interview with Michele Ivey from Cowabunga Corner
Originally uploaded on June 21, 2014 on YouTube.

In the penultimate episode of Turtle Talk, Kevin and I interviewed the main person behind the fan site Cowabunga Corner, Michele Ivey. We talked about how she was introduced to TMNT, her favorite series and films from the franchise, and more. While we dipped our toes into talking to TMNT fans with Chris "RowdyC" Moore, Michele's insights was filled with interesting stories about meeting with actors, writers, and the creators of the series, owning items from the movies, and briefly talking about her father David Ivey and his animation work. Getting to talk to a hardcore TMNT fan was such a blast and getting to clear up that she doesn't eat multiple pizzas a day or obsessively talk about TMNT as VH1 portrayed it was good for people who saw Totally Obsessed out of context. She has slowed down her content as of late due to personal issues going on with the loss of her father and her family home, but she is still determined than ever to share her love of TMNT to everyone who loves the series.

Old School Lane Casual Chats Episode 35: Interview with Paul Germain and Joe Ansolabehere
Originally uploaded on November 4, 2014 on YouTube.

It was the first double interview we've ever done as well as it was the first time that Kevin's then girlfriend (now wife) Christina joined in on the podcast. We had invited the creators of the 1997 ABC animated series Recess Paul Germain and Joe Ansolabehere. They had also worked on other animated shows such as Rugrats and Hey Arnold. We even talked about those shows, writer Steve Viksten, and the legacy of both shows. We would keep in touch over the years and I would invite them for other interviews and podcasts. My talks with Paul and Joe are moments that I will cherish.

Old School Lane Casual Chats Episode 36: Interview with Derek "The Happy Video Game Nerd" Alexander
Originally uploaded on November 26, 2014 on YouTube.

The second of the four interviews on my influences in content creation is Derek Alexander a.k.a. The Happy Video Game Nerd. In a time where everyone was reviewing bad games from their childhoods akin to James Rolfe, in comes HVGN where he reviews video games that he considers overlooked or underrated. In addition, he was the co-founder and composer of the short lived chiptune band Starship Amazing, and did livestreams under Space Money Octagon. We talked about music, video games, his stint as the HVGN, and his short lived skit series peter, dana, derek. Who would have thought that I would be the last person that had interviewed him under the HVGN name since a month later, he would announce that he would make changes to his channel and call it Stop Skeletons From Fighting alongside his girlfriend Grace Cramer. They even cameoed in Halcyon Days. Our time talking together was a great experience that I would always be grateful for.

Old School Lane Casual Chats Episode 50: Interview with Will McRobb
Originally uploaded on November 14, 2015 on YouTube.

Two milestones hit with this particular interview: Casual Chats had hit 50 episodes and it was the 4th anniversary of the podcast itself. Kevin and I decided to celebrate by inviting the co-creator of The Adventures of Pete & Pete, Will McRobb. We talked about Pete & Pete, KaBlam!, Snow Day, and more. Will was a really cool guy to have on the show and he would be very supportive for Old School Lane. He complimented my review of his Amazon Prime pilot A Kid Called Mayonnaise and he cameoed in Halcyon Days. Having Will on the show was a dream come true for me as a huge Pete & Pete fan and it's still one I'm super proud of.

Old School Lane Casual Chats Episode 59: Interview with Brandon Jones
Originally uploaded on July 19, 2016 on YouTube.

The third of four interviews of people who influenced my online content creation is Brandon Jones, the co-founder of the former video game website GameTrailers and currently the co-founder and member of the video game reviewing channel Easy Allies. He's mostly known as being the voice behind all the reviews and retrospectives. Before it shut down in 2015, I had been a huge fan of GameTrailers for almost a decade going there to watch their video game reviews, top ten list, their weekly video game discussion show, their video game retrospectives, and hosting several series such as The Angry Video Game Nerd, ScrewAttack, Hey Ash, Watch Are You Playing?, and more. We talked about starting GameTrailers, discovering ScrewAttack and AVGN, their well known videos, and the beginning of Easy Allies. When I had gotten a hold of Brandon, they were just getting started on restructuring their platform after Viacom shut down GameTrailers and they were left without a job. It was a thrill getting a hold of Brandon and he even cameoed in Halycon Days. I hope to get a hold of the other members of Easy Allies for Casual Chats some day. 

How the 3 Original Nicktoons Influenced Pop Culture with Mathew Klickstein and Caseen Gaines
Originally uploaded on August 27, 2016 on YouTube.

During the 25th anniversary celebration of the 3 original Nicktoons, I had did a series of podcasts celebrating them. Out of the bunch, I was really proud of this particular one. I had invited authors and pop culture enthusiasts Mathew Klickstein and Caseen Gaines discussing how Doug, Rugrats, and The Ren & Stimpy Show influenced pop culture when they did a series of oral history retrospectives on Decider. Even though I had both Mathew and Caseen previously in other interviews before and after this one, this one is still my favorite.

Old School Lane Casual Chats Episode 66: Interview with Arun Mehta
Originally uploaded on October 16, 2016 on YouTube.

Out of all the interviews I've done over the past 10 years, this one will always be a personal favorite of mine and one the closest to my heart. I was doing a series of videos and podcasts to celebrate the 20th anniversary of Hey Arnold and wanted to invite a fan of the show. I had done it the year before with Michelle Cavitolo talking about As Told by Ginger and had decided to bring Arun Mehta from The Arun Mehta Show to Casual Chats since I knew he was a part of the Hey Arnold: Save the Jungle Movie group and had interviewed the creator Craig Bartlett himself. We talked about his introduction of Hey Arnold, his favorite episodes, characters, and his thoughts on what he would like to see in a 6th season. After I would interview someone, I would almost never hear from them again. But Arun was one of the rare exceptions. A few months later, he invited me to be a co-host on his podcast and we became fast friends. Then almost two years later, we had decided to date each other. Arun has been a very important person in my life and I cannot imagine my life without him. 

All the interviews on We're in Between

I know, this is cheating. But I cannot choose just one interview from the weekly As Told by Ginger podcast I co-hosted alongside with Casey Reed and Ashli Wittenkeller. As a huge fan of As Told by Ginger, getting a hold of the actors, actresses, composer, directors, storyboard artists, and even the creator herself was beyond a dream come true for me. I had learned stories, facts, and behind the scenes tales that I would have never learned about had I never gotten a hold of them, but I'm glad I did. 

Old School Lane Casual Chats Episode 85: Interview with Mitch Schauer
Originally uploaded on June 11, 2017 on YouTube.

Shortly after the 20th anniversary of the 1997 Nicktoon The Angry Beavers, I had decided to get a hold of the creator himself. We talked about his early years in animation, the creation of The Angry Beavers, his favorite episodes, and talks of bringing it back with a TV movie if Nickelodeon allowed him to. I had learned some fun stories on working on the show and all the improvising by the voice actors Nick Bakay and Richard Horvitz. 

Old School Lane Casual Chats Episode 119: Interview with Craig Bartlett
Originally uploaded on November 25, 2018 on YouTube.

Back around 2013, Kevin and I had gotten a hold of Hey Arnold creator Craig Bartlett. The audio was beyond terrible, especially since half way through the podcast, maintenance had came over and mowed the lawn outside my apartment and blocked Craig's discussion. I had gotten another chance 5 years later to talk about some updates that had happened since our last discussion. Hey Arnold: The Jungle Movie had been released on Nickelodeon and he had released Hey Arnold: The Complete Collection on DVD. Hey Arnold has always been one of my favorite Nicktoons growing up and has gotten a lot more appreciated from me for multiple reasons. Craig is one of them.

Old School Lane Casual Chats Episode 124: Interview with Lisa Foiles
Originally uploaded on April 13, 2019 on YouTube.

During All That Month, I had invited one of the cast members from the 2002 incarnation of the classic 90's variety show from Nickelodeon Lisa Foiles. We talked about her time working on All That, her YouTube content, and doing a random segment of looking at the weird holidays of the month of April from Holiday Insights. She had some intriguing stories and it was so interesting to hear it coming from a funny actress. Now, Lisa has written a book and is taking care of her two children which is why her channel is on hiatus. We had a great time together and she was nothing but delightful.

Old School Lane Casual Chats Episode 164: Interview with Fred Seibert
Originally uploaded on April 9, 2021 on Anchor.

Back around September 2012, Kevin and I had Fred Seibert, the founder of Frederator Studios, to do a blog interview. Almost a decade later, I brought Fred to Casual Chats when I heard the news that he had left Frederator to do another animation company called Fred Films in California. Instead of rehashing the questions of him being the last president of Hanna Barbera and his time in Frederator, I had wanted to know what he did after our interview with him such as starting Fred Films, his recent blog article about Nickelodeon rejecting Adventure Time, and more. I had enjoyed my time talking to Fred and learning about the importance of conquering your dreams and passions.

Old School Lane Casual Chats Episode 169: Interview with Craig "Stuttering Craig" Skitsimas
Originally uploaded on July 30, 2021 on Anchor.

The fourth and final interview based on my influences in online content creation is Craig Skistimas, the co-founder of the video game website ScrewAttack. Thanks to GameTrailers, I had seeing the videos of ScrewAttack from Video Game Vault, their top 10s, SideScrollers, and more. I had followed Craig's work from his stint on GameAttack and his solo YouTube channel. We talked about ScrewAttack, starting off The Collaborator Club, and the potential of a person's content creation. He was very insightful about video games and online content creation that was very interesting to hear and learn about. It was such a thrill I was able to get a hold of him after almost a decade's worth of trying.

Old School Lane Casual Chats Episode 170: Interview with Martin Olson
Originally uploaded on August 6, 2021 on Anchor.

Martin Olson is a writer on television and books and he came by to promote his upcoming book Encyclopedia of Heaven, which was a sequel to Encyclopedia of Hell. We talked about his writing influences, working on Rocko's Modern Life, Phineas and Ferb, and Adventure Time, voicing the demon ruler Hunson Abadeer alongside his daughter Olivia who had voice Marceline the Vampire Queen, and the process of writing music. He was both informative and funny and nothing more than a delight to have over. 

That's all for now. Tune in next week as I go over my favorite collaborations from other videos and podcasts. Hope to see you around Old School Lane soon. Take care.



Saturday, December 4, 2021

Old School Lane's Favorite Episodes of Casual Chats

It's December, the last month of the year! Can't believe that in a few weeks, it'll be 2022. 2021 was definitely an improvement over 2020, but it was still a fairly rough year filled with many ups and downs. But this month is a time for celebration. This month is when my best friend and I started Old School Lane. Even though Kevin had left long ago to focus on his own life endeavors, I kept it going. Now, it'll be about 10 years since we posted our first blog article. It's incredible to think that we've been able to keep it running after all this time, but we did. It's thanks to your amazing support that we've continued going on talking about our favorite movies, TV shows, video games, and everything else in between.

5 years ago, I had posted on what had been my favorite blog interviews, blog articles, podcast episodes, podcast interviews, and videos. I had done so many other videos and podcasts since then that I want to reevaluate my years of content and update some of my lists. When I say some, I meant I would look back on my favorite podcast episodes, podcast interviews, and videos. I had stopped doing blog articles and blog interviews in favor on focusing on doing podcasts and videos, so I will not be redoing my favorites on those. Instead, I will be doing some other lookbacks on my work on Old School Lane that I'll be going over throughout this month. There's even a surprise that I'll be doing to celebrate the 10 year anniversary of Old School Lane, but I'll announce it very soon. In the meanwhile, here's a lookback on my favorite episodes of Casual Chats in chronological order.

Old School Lane Casual Chats Episode 23: The Adventures of Pete & Pete 
Originally released on November 18, 2013 on YouTube.

I don't look back fondly on my early episode of Casual Chats. The audio is terrible, my editing skills were rough, and working on a old hand-me-down computer with a $20 webcam/microphone didn't make it sound as professional as I wanted to. But talking about my favorite Nickelodeon live action show back around 2013 was a very enjoyable listen as Kevin, Alex DeCourville, Jim Bevan, and myself as we reflected on our favorite episodes, characters, the music, and the debate on whether it created the modern day hipster, especially since we released on the show's 20th anniversary. While there are plenty of better podcasts we had recorded and produced, this is the podcast I felt that was the starting point of where the quality of our discussions were getting better after doing podcasts one year after Casual Chats had started. 

Old School Lane Casual Chats Episode 32: Sonic the Hedgehog
Originally premiered on September 11, 2014 on YouTube.

One of my favorite video game franchises of all time was the Sonic series. When I was a kid, I had gotten a hand-me-down Sega Genesis from my older cousin with Sonic the Hedgehog 2 and a few other games. Since then, I own most of the classic Sonic games on Steam mostly thanks to the Sega Genesis Classic Collection and some of the modern games such as Sonic Generations and Sonic Mania. I had talked about this video game franchise more than any other and this is the first of many Sonic podcasts I would do with my friend Tom Carter. We talked about the games from the original Sonic the Hedgehog to Sonic Generations since Sonic: Lost World was the newest game at the time, the different animated series, and the comics. While video game discussions on Casual Chats were never our most popular, I had a blast with Kevin and Tom talking about our favorite blue hedgehog. 

Old School Lane Casual Chats Episode 40: Avatar: The Last Airbender 
Originally posted on February 22, 2015 on YouTube

Avatar: The Last Airbender is what I would consider to be the last of the classic Nicktoons ranked up there with Doug, Rugrats, The Ren & Stimpy Show, Rocko's Modern Life, Hey Arnold SpongeBob SquarePants, and more before it went through a massive rough patch where it had a mostly dry spell of great Nicktoons that would only be filled with The Legend of Korra, the 2012 incarnation of TMNT, and The Loud House. It's still to this day my all time favorite Nicktoon next to Hey Arnold. This episode of Casual Chats had the most amount of people in a Casual Chats, 10 including myself, talking about our favorite episodes, moments, the lore, the world building, and the terrible live action movie in honor of the show's 10th anniversary. It was a crazy, erratic, and I was so happy to see a new generation of fans gravitating to the show when it was released on Netflix and staying on the #1 spot for two months. Because of this, Mike DiMartino and Bryan Koneitzko, the creators of Avatar: The Last Airbender, are now making new Avatar projects starting with a movie combining 2D and CGI inspired by Spider-Man: Enter the Spiderverse. Even over 15 years after its premiere, I had always considered Avatar: The Last Airbender to be a nearly flawless masterpiece with its memorable and fully developed characters, intriguing story, interesting world, unique creature designs, and moments that made you both laugh and cry. It holds up beautifully to this day and would set a new standard of Nicktoons.

Old School Lane Casual Chats Episode 46: Tiny Toon Adventures
Originally uploaded on September 14, 2015 on YouTube

This is one of my favorite Casual Chats episodes that Kevin and I have done together. Tiny Toon Adventures was the first of the Warner Bros. cartoons produced by Steven Spielberg and would be the start of now classic cartoons from the Amblin lineup such as Animaniacs, Pinky and the Brain, and Freakazoid. Kevin and I talked about the importance of bringing a breath of fresh air into the Looney Tunes cartoons, the way it was able to bring female characters into the limelight at a time when they were side characters or one-note, the episodes, the music, and the TV movie How I Spent My Summer Vacation. Tiny Toon Adventures was always one of my favorite animated series as a kid and while you may say that Animaniacs had perfected its formula, it isn't without its charm. Now I'm genuinely curious on how they're going to capture that same charm with the upcoming reboot Tiny Toons Looniversity. 

Old School Lane Casual Chats Episode 62: Metroid
Originally uploaded on August 7, 2016 on YouTube

My favorite video game franchise of all time is the Metroid franchise. While it may not be not as renowned as Mario, Zelda, or Pokémon, Metroid has always intrigued me with its atmosphere, gameplay, bosses, power ups, soundtrack, and story. Jim Bevan, his friend Lily, and myself did the podcast when the franchise was celebrating its 25th anniversary and Nintendo had released the polarizing spin-off game Metroid Prime: Federation Force on the 3DS and Milton "DoctorM64" Gausti had released his critically acclaimed fan remake of Metroid II called Another Metroid II Remake. It's amazing to think that 5 years later, Metroid Dread would be released and would gain a larger audience and would be critically acclaimed receiving Game of the Year Nominations. It's the only game series that I did a Let's Play series on to celebrate the franchise's anniversary because I loved the games that much. Some of my favorite blog articles I had ever written had been about the Metroid franchise. It's great to see more people exploring the world and perspective of Samus Aran.

Old School Lane Casual Chats Episode 72: The Amblimation Trilogy
Originally uploaded on November 24, 2016 on YouTube

The first of many trilogies we would cover on Casual Chats was the discussion of the three animated films under Steven Spielberg's short lived animation film studio before being the co-founder of DreamWorks Animation. James Sullivan, Taylor Wyatt, and I talked about An American Tail: Fievel Goes West, We're Back: A Dinosaur's Story, and Balto, its history behind the films, and what other projects it would've released had it still been around. Both Don Bluth and Steven Spielberg are huge influences of mine and being a huge fan of their work, I had wanted to talk about these series of films that had since then been overshadowed by the animated films that were released during the Disney Renaissance. Fievel Goes West was released on the same day as Beauty and the Beast which was critically acclaimed by critics and viewers and nominated for Best Picture at a time when animated films had never been revered as such. Balto was released shortly after Toy Story premiered and changed the course of animation forever. It was great talking about a piece of animation history during that Thanksgiving season.

Old School Lane Casual Chats Episode 78: The Disney Renaissance Films
Originally uploaded on March 5, 2017 on YouTube

This would be the start of a series of Casual Chats episodes that Chris Moore and I did covering the seven Disney eras. At the time, Chris was working on a book looking back on the Disney films that were released from the late 80's to the late 90's and going over the morals and life lessons he had learned from watching them. Out of the all the Disney films that were released, these 10 films are still fondly remembered by animation fans and Disney enthusiasts. It was great revisiting these films and seeing it from a different view that I hadn't before. Because of this, it would be the inspiration of Chris and I going to Disney World together a year later and doing more Disney podcasts together.

Old School Lane Casual Chats Episode 79: Sailor Moon
Originally uploaded on March 12, 2017 on YouTube

It was the 25th anniversary of the iconic magical girl manga and anime Sailor Moon created by Naoko Takeuchi and J.L. O' Faolin, Curt Clark, and myself talked about the different seasons, the characters, the animation, and the terrible DiC English dub. Out of all the podcasts I've done talking about anime, this is the most viewed one and I can understand why. Sailor Moon is one of the shows that had gotten people into anime, including myself. A lot of people still look back fondly of Sailor Moon, especially the original 90's anime. When I was going to conventions, I would see at least one cosplayer dressing up as one of the Sailor Guardians. I hadn't seen Sailor Moon since the late 90's and when watching them again on the Viz Media website, I had fallen in love with the series all over again. When Sailor Moon Crystal completes its run, you can be sure that we'll be talking about it.

Old School Lane Casual Chats Episode 81: Azumanga Daioh
Originally uploaded on April 9, 2017 on YouTube.

On the 15th anniversary of the slice of life anime Azumanga Daioh, ZenithWillRule and I talked about our favorite characters, episodes, moments, and jokes. This was a different discussion since Azumanga Daioh is mostly known for its characters and jokes more than its story. I have had a strong connection with this anime since college and would be one of the shows I would make my way to watch every year. It has influenced me in so many ways that I've even drew elements of it on a series of stories I want to publish someday. Azumanga Daioh is one of the quintessential slice of life anime that would go on to influence other shows such as K-On!, Lucky Star, and more. It's a classic that has stood the test of time and I had enjoyed talking about it with Zenith. 

Old School Lane Casual Chats Episode 89: The Sullivan/Bluth Studios Movies
Originally uploaded on August 6, 2017 on YouTube.

Going back in the realm of Don Bluth is this discussion of the eight films that were released on his animation studio from the early 80s to the mid 90s alongside with James Sullivan and Mat Brunet. It was perfect timing since The Secret of NIMH was celebrating its 35th anniversary. As a kid, I had grown up watching Don Bluth's films and they were just as great as the Disney films at the time. Films such as An American Tail, The Land Before Time, and All Dogs Go to Heaven are childhood favorites of mine and it was great revisiting them for the first time in decades. It wasn't so great visiting his later films, but we had a blast talking about them nevertheless. 

Old School Lane Casual Chats Episode 91: Recess
Originally uploaded on August 31, 2017 on YouTube

It was the 20th anniversary of the ABC animated series Recess and who better to talk about the series than the people behind the show. I invited creators Paul Germain and Joe Ansolabehere, writers Bart Jennett and Peter Gaffney, composer Denis Hannigan, and voice actor Courtland Mead to talk about their experiences working on it. It was such a blast getting together the people who were a part of one of my favorite shows growing up and recalling fond memories of how they came up with the episodes, characters, and music. 

Old School Lane Casual Chats Episode 101: The Fox Animation Studios Trilogy
Originally uploaded on January 9, 2018 on YouTube.

Continuing with the discussion of Don Bluth, I had James Sullivan, Taylor Wyatt, and Nero Angelus talking about The Fox Animation Studios trilogy. After Sullivan/Bluth Studios was shut down, he had started another studio at Fox releasing Anastasia, Bartok the Magnificent, and Titan A.E. I had seen Anastasia and Titan A.E. before, but had never seen Bartok the Magnificent before. Knowing that there were a lot of animated direct to video sequels on Don Bluth films that he had no involvement in, I was curious to see how Bartok would end up. Sadly, it was underwhelming and disappointing. But Titan A.E. was even more of an underwhelming disappointment knowing the behind the scene issues that occur in the making of the film, the deleted scenes that strengthened the story and character development, and the box office failure that resulted in the end of Don Bluth's film career and the shut down of Fox Animation Studios. We had concluded the podcast going over the Dragon's Lair movie animation pitch that only his Indiegogo donators were able to see. Since I was one of them, I had talked about how the origins of Dirk the Daring and Princess Daphne reminded me of The Swan Princess. Who would have thought that Titan A.E. would still be considered his last animated film when it was reported years later that the Dragon's Lair movie would now be live action? I didn't, that's for sure.

Old School Lane Casual Chats Episode 103: The Pokémon Movies and OVAs
Originally uploaded on February 11, 2018 on YouTube.

I had just recently watched Pokemon: I Choose You in theaters and had decided to watch all of the films and OVAs after not having seeing most of them. The films I did see I hadn't seeing in over 20 years and had revisited them again. With Jim, Eli Stone, and Des Shinta, we talked about our memories watching films based on the anime based on the video games. While some of the films weren't that great, there were others that I was genuinely surprised on how complex and emotional they could be. I haven't seen the newer Pokémon films yet, but when I do, I definitely want to return to this topic. I had a great time talking about these films.

Old School Lane Casual Chats Episode 115: SNICK
Originally uploaded on September 22, 2018 on YouTube.

This was a podcast episode I had to record a second time when I had lost the original audio. I had invited David and Eli from the Are You Afraid of the Dark? podcast You Scared of This? to talk about the Nickelodeon 2 hour block SNICK that would air certain programs on Saturday nights. We talked about the iconic programs that aired on that block like Clarissa Explains it All to the more obscure programs like Space Cases. We talked about the height of its popularity around the 90s and its eventual downfall around the 2000s when its best shows were cancelled and were replaced by other programs that never caught on. The Nickelodeon podcasts have been my most listened to on Casual Chats and this has been one of my favorites I've done. I'm so glad I re-recorded the audio because it's one that I'm still very proud of. 

Old School Lane Casual Chats Episode 121: The Land Before Time Franchise
Originally uploaded on December 19, 2018

This is the 3rd time that Don Bluth was a topic on Casual Chats, but this time it was on The Land Before Time, its 13 sequels, and animated series. I brought Eli to this discussion since he was an expert on the subject having seeing all of the films. I had only seeing the first 5 sequels and skipped on the rest. When I had marathon all 14 films, I had noticed that they started to get progressively worse around the 11th, 12th, and 13th sequel with its mediocre songs, softened story, unnecessary character additions, and low budget animation. It was a far cry from the original Land Before Time movie I had loved and cherished. But I still had fun looking back on these films and poking fun at their hilariously bad moments. 

Old School Lane Casual Chats Episode 133: The Swan Princess Franchise
Originally uploaded on November 29, 2019 on YouTube

It was the 25th anniversary of The Swan Princess and I had brought J.L, Curt, and Christy Esterlie to talk about the franchise. I had watched the film's pink carpet celebration and listened to a podcast where the producer talked about the making of the film and found it to be very fascinating. It was the first animated film by Nest Entertainment (now known as Crest Animation), an animation studio founded by former Disney animator Richard Rich who had left the company to do his own work. While never receiving the same critical accolades of Don Bluth, he's still working on animated films which is what we talked about looking at all 10 Swan Princess films. While the first film was simply okay, the sequels got worse and worse, especially when they switched over to 3D. But the discussions were a blast to get through and a great way to get through the awful films.

Old School Lane Casual Chats Episode 139: A Goofy Movie and An Extremely Goofy Movie
Originally uploaded on April 8, 2020 on Anchor.

It was both the 25th anniversary of A Goofy Movie and the 20th anniversary of its sequel An Extremely Goofy Movie and Arun Mehta, Jim, Eli, and Tariq talked about both of them. We talked about the surprise lukewarm reception that A Goofy Movie received from critics back in 1995 and its overwhelmingly response from the people who loved the film. It was able to humanize Goofy in a way that was never shown in the 1940s Disney shorts and even in the animated series Goof Troop with the relationship he had with his son Max. With the sequel, it continued the relationship with Max now that he was in college. We went over the juxtaposition between Goofy and Max with Pete and PJ, the music by Powerline, and the serious moments that surprised us when rewatching the films again. 

Old School Lane Casual Chats Episode 139: The Studio Ghibli Films
Originally uploaded on August 31, 2020 on Anchor.

It was the 35th anniversary of the founding of the Japanese animation studio Studio Ghibli by Hayao Miyazaki, Isao Takahata, Toshio Suzuki, and Yasuyoshi Tokuma. Zenith Warrior Princess, Filip Kanzurovski, and myself had only seeing the Miyazaki films, but we talked about how he was able to feature fantastic female protagonists, environmental stories, calming music, whimsical settings, quiet atmosphere, and magical elements. From Nausicaa to The Wind Rises, Miyazaki's films have become just as beloved as Disney animated films. We promised that we would return to Studio Ghibli films to watch the films we weren't able to. With Miyazaki announcing his next animation project, that would be the best time to make a follow up podcast.

Old School Lane Casual Chats Episode 154: Calvin and Hobbes.
Originally uploaded on January 4, 2021 on Anchor.

The first time covering comic strips needed experts on the subject and inviting Andrew Farago and his wife Shaenon Garrity were the perfect guests. We talked about how we were first introduced to the comic strips by Bill Watterson, the hilarious moments featuring Calvin and his toy tiger Hobbes, the profound moments of intellect, and its exaggerated presentation. While the strips ended over 25 years ago, fans are still gravitating to the strip's timeless tales of simple childhood wonder and the parents' frustrated personas on raising a sarcastic and over imaginative boy. 

Old School Lane Casual Chats Episode 158: The Pokémon Anime
Originally uploaded on February 23, 2021 on Anchor.

In honor of Pokémon's 25th anniversary, I had invited Malik and Devonte McLeod talking about the anime featuring the trainer Satoshi (Ash Ketchum) and his travels from the Kanto region to the Galar region. I had not seen the anime since Pokémon Advanced Battle ended so having two guests who caught up with the anime was great since I was able to learn what had happened since then. I was able to give my insights on the Kanto, Johto, and Hoenn seasons and talk about some of the episodes I had remembered and the moments that made a lot of people laugh and cry. We even covered the music that was produced in both Japan and America and how it was able to impact the show. I had a great time talking about the anime and learning some new information I hadn't known about before.

Old School Lane Casual Chats Episode 165: The Owl House Season 1
Originally uploaded on June 7, 2021 on Anchor.

At Old School Lane, we have been known for covering older movies, TV shows, video games, etc. So, a new show has to be very special if we were going to be covering it. That's exactly what happened with the 2020 Disney Channel animated series The Owl House. Arun, Paul Thomas, Michael McKinney, Tim Murphy, Rebecca Rose, and I had talked about the show's first season in honor of the second season's premiere. Arun and I had gotten requests from our listeners to cover this show, so we had decided to watch it together on Disney+. We had loved it so much that we decided to cover it as soon as we were done watching it. Since then, we had been doing episode recaps on Arun and Patricia and brought it up in our discussion at our PixMix episode of Monsters at Work. It has become one of our favorite shows and we cannot wait until the second half of Season 2 begins. 

Old School Lane Casual Chats Episode 173: As Told by Ginger
Originally uploaded on November 1, 2021

I have stated multiple times over the years that I felt that As Told by Ginger was the most underrated Nicktoon ever made. In this episode, I invited Antoni Garcia and Ryan Stevens and Brooke Smith from the Nation of Animation podcast talking about it. We talked about our favorite episodes, characters, moments, and our opinion on why the show was overlooked. Every year for the past 5 years, I had released content about As Told by Ginger and had continued the tradition. It was great that more and more people had been tuning into As Told by Ginger over the years in thanks to the series being more available on streaming sites like Paramount Plus, Amazon Prime, and Pluto TV. It was even more great to read the comments from people saying that they loved the show and really appreciated the podcast talking about it, especially since the As Told by Ginger podcast We're in Between had ended its run years ago. It was great talking about this show again.

That's it for now. Tune in next week as I talk about my favorite podcast interviews. Hope to see you around Old School Lane soon. Thanks for reading.