Chicago Foodcast

Episode 5: “The Best EFFEN Episode”

Interviews with Jim Beam Global Spirits Master Mixologist Bobby “G” Gleason and Chicago mixlogists

Running Time: 48:20

Chicago Foodcast

Episode Description: Episode 5 of Chicago Foodcast is “The Best EFFEN Episode,” as Archie and Bill head to the Hard Rock Hotel in Chicago for a big EFFEN bash, EFFEN vodka that is. The episode features discussion on top Chicago mixologists competing to make the tastiest concoctions with EFFEN, EFFEN Black Cherry and EFFEN Cucumber. Bill also sits down for an interview with Jim Beam Global Spirits Master Mixologist Bobby “G” Gleason, as well as three of Chicago’s top mixologists and bartenders. Sarah Kumley joins the guys for the episode, and brings Mike’s Hard Strawberry Lemonade for “Happy Hour.” She also displays her cupcake enthusiasm by making a batch of cupcakes from ThinkGeek’s new Zombie Cupcakes recipe book. On “Hey Fatty! Whatcha been eatin?” the trio talks Bleeding Heart Bakery, Park Grill, Meatyballs Mobile, SkrineChops and Owen & Engine.

Music on the episode – Al Duvall’s “The Day Bartender” (more…)


No matter what happens at MITB, Punk rant was brilliant

How WWE is playing a hometown, the internet and more

By Bill Jones

No matter what happens at the Money in the Bank pay-per-view in Chicago this Sunday, there’s no denying that the already infamous June 27 Monday Night Raw rant was an absolutely brilliant move. And its impact is already readily apparent. More people are buzzing about the world of professional wrestling than they have in years; WWE is likely to get great buyrates for a PPV that otherwise might have been considered second-rate and gone largely under the radar; people were chanting CM Punk’s name on Raw tonight; and there is the setup for some great shock value in Punk’s hometown.

For those coming to this story unfamiliar with the situation, CM Punk came out at the end of Monday Night Raw June 27, cost John Cena a tables match against R Truth, and proceeded to sit at the top of the ramp and cut a promo that had many wondering whether it was scripted or whether CM Punk had really just gone off the hinges. (more…)


Band: Deal Gone Bad

Album: “Far From Home”/ “These Arms of Mine” 7-inch

Label: Self

Rating: ★★½☆☆

Review by: Bill Jones

Deals Gone Bad has always been a fun band to see on the opening bill of local shows in Chicago, especially at the Midwest Skafest. Frankly, they’re a nice chance of pace from the usual punk stuff that I’ve got playing, and even the faster-paced ska featured on the festival bills. The band is a talented group of guys that bring a soulful blend of reggae influence to the forefront of virtually everything they do, creating a relaxing sound.

So I’ve got to admit I was excited with the introduction of their latest release’s A-side, “Far From Home,” the first original tune from the band since 2007’s The Ramblers. The opening is full of energy, almost giving off an in-your-face Blues Brothers sort of vibe. (more…)


Title: Under the Boardwalk: The Monopoly Story

Format: DVD

Studio: Tostie Productions, Rhino Films

Directed by: Kevin Tostado

Film Rating: ★★★☆☆

Review by: Bill Jones

The Film

UPDATE: The DVD rating and portion of the review was removed from the review after it was brought to our attention by the studio that the copy we received was not a final retail copy, as previously believed.

Under the Boardwalk is an independent film Pads & Panels stumbled across as the Chicago Toy and Game Fair in Chicago last year. And while it does open to The Drifters’ 1964 pop hit of the same name, the boardwalk in reference is the big-money blue piece at the end of the board in Monopoly.

The film seeks to tell the tale of Monopoly and its prominent place in the board game industry, as well as focus on some competitors in national and international tournaments for the game. But while it is entertaining, features interesting characters and offers the common gamer more info on the origins of the game, Under the Boardwalk leaves the viewer thinking it could have gone deeper, and the same could be said for its DVD release. (more…)


Chicago Foodcast

Episode 3: “Two Girls, One Goat”

Interview with Chef Stephanie Izard (Girl and the Goat)

Running Time: 61:08

Chicago Foodcast

Episode Description: On the third episode of Chicago Foodcast, “Two Girls, One Goat,” Archie and Bill sit down for a lengthy interview with Girl and the Goat Executive Chef Stephanie Izard, to chat about her career after winning Top Chef Season 4, coming up on one year with her Chicago restaurant, finding the right farms, artwork, her philosophies on cooking, craft brews, a James Beard Foundation nomination, her favorite Chicago eats, drinking, celebrities, Taco Bell and porn. The duo also brings Bill’s fiancée, Sarah, along to Girl and the Goat for a sampling of 10 dishes, including fish, meats and veggies. In another segment of “Hey Fatty! Whatcha been eatin’?” Bill talks about Triple Crown in Chinatown, Archie makes trips to Cactus Bar & Grill and Paddy Long’s, and Sarah gets breakfast at Panini Xpresso and a burger at Five Guys. “Snack Break” thematically ties into the interview when the group gets Taco Bell Beefy Crunch Burritos, and then tries to get the taste out of their mouths with Newtons Fruit Thins. All of that, and Chicago Foodcast gets its first two pieces of fan mail.

Music on the episode – Pierlo’s “King of the Kitchen” via (more…)


Band: Omar Rodriguez Lopez

Opener: Zechs Marquise

Venue: The Bottom Lounge, Chicago, IL

Date: Sunday, April 3, 2011

Review and Photos by: Eric Stuckart

Omar Rodriguez Lopez has more than a few tricks up his sleeve. The guitarist – who has been known for his work with seminal punk act At the Drive-In, dub-reggae band De Facto, as well as the progressive rock beast that is The Mars Volta – likes to keep his audiences on their toes.

And how does he do that? Through sheer firepower – that’s how. (more…)


Fear Itself

Interview with Writer Matt Fraction

Interview by: Bill Jones, Matt Peters, Archie Easter

Introduction and Transcription by: Bill Jones

There is nothing comics publishers and fans seem to love quite as much as a big summer event. And this year, Marvel’s camp has tapped Matt Fraction to take the lead writing duties on Fear Itself. Issue #1 of the mini-series hits shelves today, Wednesday, April 6, promising plenty of Marvel favorites, an epic storyline and plenty of spin-offs. We caught up with Fraction Sunday, March 20, at the Chicago Comic and Entertainment Expo in Chicago, and figured there’s no point in us telling readers all about the series when we can have the writer himself do it. Fraction also discusses the Iron Man films, his involvement with the second video game, what it’s like to be chosen for a comics event, going from the comic shop to the con floor and a Spider-Man “thing” he’s had in mind. (more…)


Pads & Panels’ Bill Jones and Matt Peters caught up with World Wrestling Entertainment’s Monday Night RAW announcer Jerry ‘The King’ Lawler on the verge of his first match at WrestleMania. As The King prepares to take on fellow announcer Michael Cole, he talks about going into his first WrestleMania, getting a couple title shots, his favorite announcer to work with, and his passion for comic book art. The interview took place Saturday, March 19, at Chicago Comic and Entertainment Expo (C2E2) at McCormick Place in Chicago. A special thanks to The King for taking time to do the interview after a long day of signing and illustrating.


C2E2 Photo Gallery – Day Three, Part III – Matt Peters

Okay, so this is officially the last gallery we have to post from C2E2. It’s been a long road, and rather than a celeb, this one is headlined by the great Matt Peters doing a cool thing by giving away a pretty awesome Thor hammer on children’s day. So, hooray for kindness. All photos copyright Pads & Panels, by Matt Peters. (more…)


C2E2 Photo Gallery – Day Three, Part I – Bill Jones

The first gallery from the final day of C2E2 features the dapper gents of Cyanide and Happiness, Archie and Matt in costume (along with so many others), sculpting, a protest and a walk through the webcomics pavilion. All photos copyright Pads & Panels, by Bill Jones. (more…)