While we enjoyed NYCC by day we ended up dining at NINJA NEW YORK by night.

Ninja New York Restaurant -RetrendersOur host of Ramen’s other Half, Jonelle Marie, shares her first impression of fine dining in Tribeca’s one-of-a-kind Ninja New York Restaurant!
While there, we were looking for that secret door – you know, the one you would open and discover the artistry of Ninja acrobatic sword fighting and trickery like a James Bond flick, but it was impossible.  The place was a maze and when we asked to take us to your leader, they sent us numerous of Ninja PR henchmen to divert us from straight answers about what laid behind the echoing walls of their zigzagging cave-like paths that only Batman would appreciate. Though mystified by their stories, we had one of the most entertaining dining night outs I’ve had in a long time.

I would have to say Ninja New York is one of the most entertaining and delightful places to dine if you’re looking for fun and hearty authentic Japanese cuisine food. And you’re almost guaranteed not to have a dull moment from your first step in and out of this place!

ANIME EXPO 2013 : Simul TV – The Next Generation of the Social Television Experience is Here!

I’ve sat in front of the television with my laptop and literally chatted via skpe, twitter, and even shot a facebook comment while watching a FIFA world cup soccer game. In some cases I made a long distant call to rub a score into my best friend’s face! Wouldn’t it be nice if there was an available platform with the game on screen with updated twitter & facebook comments, and Skyping with friends or family joining in on the game to have the ultimate social game experience! Well look no further – Steven Turner has developed the platfom and it’s called Simul TV. “The Eddie” gets the scoop!

Retrenders - Simul TV CEO Steven Turner - Eddie Ballar - Johnny Moreno

This segment opens up with the Ramen crew’s “The Eddie” finally getting Alodia Gosiengfiao to give our Ramen and a Half show a shout out.

Retrenders - Anime Expo - Eddie Ballar & Alodia Gosiengfiao - Johnny Moreno

Alodia Panel Interview CUTS 2 : The Mistress of Cosplay

The Ramen crew felt a bit like a paparazzi, though we haven’t exactly dodged crowds, leaped over people, or body-checked anyone aside at any convention yet!  The only thing we managed to dodge are off topic questions, loud hand-clapping and voices that over powered us from hearing our subject, Alodia Gosiengfiao FHM.Retrenders - Johnny Moreno - Alodia Gosiengfiao Ramen and a HalfIn this segment we get plenty of new surfacing information about our Mistress of Cosplay.

So here’s Panel Interview CUTS 2 – raw and lightly cut – which means I did very little editing. So it’s
STRICKLY FOR THE FANS to hear first hand answers from Alodia herself :

– Her Cosplay beginnings
– What she likes about being a Cosplayer
– Her stumbled upon opportunities
– Video Game influences like Final Fantasy
– Cosplay pointers
– Her first reaction as Guest of Honor at AX 2013
– The Fan that came all the way from Germany to see her
– Costume making
– Her make up – her eyes & contact lens of choice and why?

Alodia Panel Interview CUTS: Finally we get some answers!
ANIME EXPO 2013: Sleeping Cosplay? Batman & Spiderman duo? Mortal Come back?
AX 2013: Adventure Time & X-Men Cosplayers Collide
AX 2013: Captain Falcon & Crew!
ANIME EXPO 2013 : In line to see Alodia and we meet Kirito & Asuna Cosplayers
ANIME EXPO 2013 Masquerade: Thomas Depetrillo’s EVA-01
Jessica Nigri : Part 1 of 3
Jessica Nigri : Part 2 of 3
Jessica Nigri : Part 3 of 3
ANIME EXPO 2013 Masquerade : Ornament Tree Wings
Hey Hey Alodia from ANIME EXPO!

Each story is not just an interview, but one of the many interesting and entertaining things that happen at Anime Conventions. They’re short, sweet and you might find yourself liking our content!

BitCoin or Big Wow! Comicfest?

bitcoinIt was hard for me to decide which convention to go to when Bitcoin the future of currency and Big Wow! Comicfest 2013 happened at the same time at the San Jose Convention Center.  The nerd in me wanted to find out more about this new form of cryptocurrency called Bitcoin (BTC) created by Satoshi Nakamoto.  But anyways, I’m probably boring people now, let’s get on with another episode of Ramen from Big Wow! Comicfest:

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Batman & Robin Inker Mick Gray!

BW201309Everybody knows what a comic book artists does – they draw and are treated like rockstars, but what about inkers?  Our Ramen team chit chats with Batman & Robin inker Mick Gray about the process of inking comic books @ The Big Wow! Comicfest 2013.

Spotlight #8: Behind-the-Scenes with Ensambles Ballet Folklórico de San Francisco

Retrenders visited Ensambles Ballet Folklórico de San Francisco to catch a glimpse into the intense planning and preparation that took place months ago for the upcoming 20th anniversary show, “Las Pinturas de Diego Rivera y Frida Kahlo en Movimiento” (The paintings of Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo in Movement).


Ensambles, a premier Mexican folk dance company in San Francisco, has been presenting the art, dance and culture of Mexico on stages and venues in the Bay Area and abroad throughout the last 20 years.

The company, led by artistic visionary, Zenón Barron, will be presenting its capstone performances at the Herbst Theatre in San Francisco and at the Spreckels Performing Arts Center in Rohnert Park.


The cast of Ensambles is over 35 dancers strong, with training in multiple dance disciplines. The special presentation will bring together the dance company and three of the Bay Area’s finest traditional musical groups: Vinic-Kay (La Gente y el Canto), Cascada de Flores and Los Compas.

Show schedule:

November 3, 2012 – 7:30pm – Herbst Theater, San Francisco

November 17, 2012 – 7:30pm – Spreckels Performing Arts Center, Rohnert Park

Tickets can be purchased at City Box Office


For more info, see: Ensambles and Cascada de Flores

Contributed by Al Morales (aka greyluvr)
Host, Retrenders Spotlight


Indie Filmmaking – Do it Yourself Car Rig Mount

In my ultimate endeavor to make a film, I found myself problem solving the technical needs for filming car scenes before walking into them; the rig type, the construction, the weight load and solid support are only a few of the things I considered when wanting to get those fantastic car driving shots. So I did my research and came across a couple of car mount systems that I liked, but they were just way out of my price range and involved way too many accessorizing tools,  so I decided to build my own bare essentials heavy duty car rig mount that was very versatile!

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