The Thirteenth Hour Podcast #222: Reading Choose Your Own Adventure 88 – Master of Kung Fu

Episode #222: Reading Choose Your Own Adventure 88 – Master of Kung Fu

This week, I take a trip back to 1989 in reading a Choose Your Own Adventure book – Master of Kung Fu by Richard Brightfield and illustrated by Frank Bolle.  It’s a real blast from the blast – a true mish-mash of 80s Asian tropes, including most of the stuff that permeated martial arts films at the time.  Some of it is truly, well, cringeworthy, like some of the 80s kung fu and ninja flicks back then … but let’s not get ahead of ourselves.  I thought these books were the bee’s knees in 1989 so I’m going to try to suspend, you know, reality (at least in an adult sense), and appreciate this with the mind of an elementary school age child (which makes it awesome again).


By the way, speaking of kung fu and ninjas, yes, they’re both in this book.  Yes, I know it’s talking about China and kung fu and white lotus societies.  There are still ninjas (suspend judgement, suspend judgement, suspend judgement, ok?  Ninjutsu has some roots in Chinese martial arts, and it all goes back to India and Tibet, anyway, so … you know, just go with it).


Yup, straight out of Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom – totally not joking … one of the more cringeworthy parts … product of the times.


Basically sums up the 80s ninja craze – stick ’em everything! Especially wearing the black PJs in broad daylight, since you know, that blends in so well. It all made more sense in 1989.




There are now Thirteenth Hour toys!  If you’d like to pick up one of these glow in the dark figures for yourself, feel free to email me or go to the Etsy store I set up ( and get them there.

If you haven’t checked out “Arcade Days,” the song and video Jeff Finley, Brent Simon, and I finished last winter, click on the link below to do so!

You can find more pictures and preview clips of “Arcade Days” on IG as well as this podcast’s FB page.

Empty Hands, the synth EP soundtrack to the novella, Empty Hands, is now out for streaming on Bandcamp.  

empty hands ep cover_edited-2.jpg

Stay tuned.  Follow along on Spotify!  There is also a growing extended Thirteenth Hour playlist on Spotify with a growing number of retro 80s songs.

Check it out!

As always, thanks for listening!