Category: Movies & TV

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Thanos | Badass of the Week

You address omnipotence. Tread carefully.”

A special edition of Badass of the Week by Ben Thompson

Going out the week of San Diego Comic-Con and telling a bunch of superhero aficionados that Thanos is badass is kind of like walking into a Star Trek convention and announcing that Vulcans have pointy ears. No shit, Professor X, why don’t you tell us something we didn’t already infer telepathically just by looking at a comic book panel depicting a giant, beady-eyed muscle-bound behemoth backhanding Captain America to the turn with one hand while simultaneously head-butting a structural tear in the fabric of the universe with his wrinkly purple forehead?

Ben Thompson graduated from Florida State University in 2002 with degrees in History and Political Science. He has run the popular website badassoftheweek.com since 2004, and has written humorous history-related columns for outlets such as Cracked, Fangoria, Penthouse, and the American Mustache Institute. His first book, BADASS: A Relentless Onslaught of the Toughest Warlords, Vikings, Samurai, Pirates, Gunfighters, and Military Commanders to Ever Live was published worldwide by HarperCollins in October 2009. A second book, titled BADASS: Birth of a Legend: Spine-Crushing Tales of the Most Merciless Gods, Heroes, Villains, and Mythical Beings Ever Envisioned, was released by the same publisher in March 2011.

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1984

Down in the Ghetto at the SF Café – Notes From New Sodom

“Don’t tell anybody, but science fiction no longer exists.”
Matthew Cheney, The Old Equations, Strange Horizons

Welcome to the SF Café, in the ghetto of Genre, in the city of Writing, in the Republic of Art.  We call it the SF Café because only the letters S and F survive, but you can still see the full name today, The Science Fiction Café and Bar, traced in the grime, outlined in the negative shadow of those clean spaces left where the letters have fallen away.  It may look a bit shabby from the outside and there’s surely some weird shit in the window that makes you wonder what the fuck is going on inside.  But let’s step through the door right now, and step through the decades too, to see it as it once was, the shining formica of the counter-top, the sleek silvery steel of the coffee machine and soda fountain, the bakelite and plastic of the trappings, the decor all bright white and brilliant red, shining, gleaming, with the Fifties promise of futurity.  This is the SF Café as it was in the Golden Age, when Old Man Campbell owned it.

Emphasis on the was.

Hal Duncan is a sodomitic Scots smoker who staggered drunkenly into the SF Café in 2005 with his debut, VELLUM, and now has various novels, novellas, short stories, poems and essays circling in print or the aether. Further scribblings and rantings can be found at www.halduncan.com.

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richard kadrey

What the Devil Taught Me – Richard Kadrey Guest Blog

If science fiction is the metaphorical engine that lets all kinds of clever kids with RSS feeds of New Scientist and BoingBoing write about our glorious nano-pr0ned future as a way to really write about the present, what the hell does that make fantasy?

New York Times bestselling author of the Sandman Slim series. He also writes comics and takes pictures.

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hal duncan

The Scourge of Sci-Fi

Ordure and Bullshit

“Nine tenths of science fiction is crud. Of course, nine tenths of everything is crud.”
Theodore Sturgeon

In the uptown district of Literature and the midtown district of Mainstream, so the story goes, the high-brow and the mid-brow all turn their noses up when they glance downtown, in the direction of Genre. Fairy tales for children, they sneer. On the door of the Bistro de Critique there was for a good many years a sign that read, “No Genre allowed.” The nearest they ever got to a genre label is General Fiction — a term with an empty definition if ever there was one, catch-all for a host of idioms and idiosyncracies. No, genre fiction just isn’t de rigeur there, so the story goes. So, fuck em, we say. Fuck the mundanes of Mainstream, the elitists of Literature. We’re Genre and proud of it.

Hal Duncan is a sodomitic Scots smoker who staggered drunkenly into the SF Café in 2005 with his debut, VELLUM, and now has various novels, novellas, short stories, poems and essays circling in print or the aether. Further scribblings and rantings can be found at www.halduncan.com.

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gareth edwards

Gareth Edwards Interview | Monsters

Gareth Edwards is not what you probably picture when you think of a special effects artist turned science fiction director:  he’s personable and energetic, as charming to look at as he is to listen to, and utterly enthusiastic about his new movie, Monsters.  If you haven’t heard about it, it’s a near-future in which a NASA probe brought back life from one of Jupiter’s moons, and the creatures have taken over half of Mexico.

Elena Nola is the imperial movie critic and the colder half of the Ladies of Ice and Fire.

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deadpool

Deadpool – Badass of the Week

“Destiny doesn’t care that I’ve made sacrifices to get here.

That I’ve said my prayers and brushed after meals.

Destiny wants a garbage man… and I’m always it.

Bang bang.  I’m Deadpool.  You’re Dead.

A special edition of Badass of the Week  by Ben Thompson

Deadpool is a criminally deranged, psychopathic ninja mercenary with a mutant healing factor, a withering sarcastic wit, an encyclopedic array of pop culture references, and unfettered access to katanas, hand grenades and automatic weapons, which he uses to kill everyone ever.  He’s like Snake Eyes, Wolverine, and David Spade’s Hollywood Minute mashed into the body of an Olympic athlete, then combined with the impulse control of Charlie Manson – and the end result is that he’s so fucking awesome at pummeling people into meat juice that he somehow manages to be an effective assassin even though he sneaks around heavily-fortified military facilities in a fire-engine red jumpsuit.

Ben Thompson graduated from Florida State University in 2002 with degrees in History and Political Science. He has run the popular website badassoftheweek.com since 2004, and has written humorous history-related columns for outlets such as Cracked, Fangoria, Penthouse, and the American Mustache Institute. His first book, BADASS: A Relentless Onslaught of the Toughest Warlords, Vikings, Samurai, Pirates, Gunfighters, and Military Commanders to Ever Live was published worldwide by HarperCollins in October 2009. A second book, titled BADASS: Birth of a Legend: Spine-Crushing Tales of the Most Merciless Gods, Heroes, Villains, and Mythical Beings Ever Envisioned, was released by the same publisher in March 2011.

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flash gordon

The Marriage(s) of Science Fiction & Fantasy – Notes From New Sodom

The Great Debate

“The question of whether a certain story of imagination is a fantasy or a science fiction work would depend upon the device the author uses to explain his projected or unreal world. If he uses the gimmick or device of saying: ‘This is a logical or probable assumption based upon known science, which is going to develop from known science or from investigations of areas not yet quite explored but suspected,’ then one could call it science fiction. But if he asks the reader to suspend his disbelief simply because of the fun of it, in other words, just to say: ‘Here is a fairy tale I’m going to tell you,’ then it is fantasy. It could actually be the same story.”
Sam J. Lundwall

Down in the ghetto of Genre, in the SF Café that is our literary salon, in this scene of zines and forums, conventions and clubs, there’s a Great Debate that kicks off every so often. The diversity of the clientele maps to a diversity of opinions — convictions, even — and few of these are as contentious as those addressing the differences or lack thereof between science fiction and fantasy. To be fair, the taxonomy of literary genres is a game that appeals to the geek in me as much as anyone, but the diversity we’re dealing with in the SF Café is obscured by the very word genre, its meaning muddled by a conflation of openly-defined aesthetic idioms with conventional forms that are closely-defined and marketing categories that are all but empty of definition.

Hal Duncan is a sodomitic Scots smoker who staggered drunkenly into the SF Café in 2005 with his debut, VELLUM, and now has various novels, novellas, short stories, poems and essays circling in print or the aether. Further scribblings and rantings can be found at www.halduncan.com.

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the goonies

The Goonies – Troy’s Bucket (and Why I Ain’t Riding Up It)

If you’re anything like me, you’re broke.

Not quite selling-your-plasma-for-lunch-money broke.  But definitely dodging-bill-collectors-and-praying-to-a-God-you-don’t-believe-in-that-your-car-won’t-break-down-again broke.

+Jimmy Callaway rules over Criminal Complex with an iron fist in a Playtex glove. He lives in San Diego, California.

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batman

Batman | Badass of the Week

He’s the most dangerous man in the galaxy

Superman, telling some Martians about Batman

A special edition of Badass of the Week by Ben Thompson

Batman is a crime-fighting vigilante ninja detective who dresses up in bullet-proof armor, wears a gigantic black cape, hides in the darkest corners of the city, and then sneak-attack face-kicks the world’s most sadistic criminal douchebags until every felon in the tri-state area is passed out unconscious in a Gotham City Prison complaining about how they’ve got concussions so bad that their brains are leaking out their noses.  He’s one of comics’ most beloved, longest-running, and badass superheroes, an ultra-genius master of stealth and hand-to-hand combat, and a man so over-the-top hardcore that the mere mention of his name has been known to cause incontinence among the seedier members of human society.

Ben Thompson graduated from Florida State University in 2002 with degrees in History and Political Science. He has run the popular website badassoftheweek.com since 2004, and has written humorous history-related columns for outlets such as Cracked, Fangoria, Penthouse, and the American Mustache Institute. His first book, BADASS: A Relentless Onslaught of the Toughest Warlords, Vikings, Samurai, Pirates, Gunfighters, and Military Commanders to Ever Live was published worldwide by HarperCollins in October 2009. A second book, titled BADASS: Birth of a Legend: Spine-Crushing Tales of the Most Merciless Gods, Heroes, Villains, and Mythical Beings Ever Envisioned, was released by the same publisher in March 2011.

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Charlie Huston

Caught Stealing with Joe Pitt – Charlie Huston Interview

Today we are pleased to present an interview with Charlie Huston. Coming off of a run on Marvel’s Moon Knight Charlie Huston is a writer who also has several novels to his credit, including being three books into the continuing vamp noir adventures of Joe Pitt, and The Hank Thompson trilogy. More recently, the Edgar nominated author, switched perspectives and wrote the stand-alone Shotgun Rule. The fourth book in the Joe Pitt Casebooks, Every Last Drop, is scheduled for a September 2008 release.

protoculture hoarding, devil fruit eating, chilling in a house of leaves. Catch me @biglob or Jenius.blog

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leon

Cut For Your Pleasure – LEON: THE PROFESSIONAL

Exploring censorship, alternate versions of crime classics and the reasons behind creative changes. This edition: LEON: THE PROFESSIONAL

Liam José is the name given to a highly sophisticated system of
pullies and levers that edits and designs Crime Factory. Upgrades have
included a random text generator, the output of which has appeared in
places like A Twist of Noir, Powder Burn Flash, Flash Fiction
Offensive, and as one of the winning entries of the 2010 WGI at
Drowning Pool. It is serviced irregularly in Melbourne, Australia.

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george rr martin

No Thrones – A George R.R. Martin Interview

I have always enjoyed reading interviews of George R.R. Martin. Not because they offer informative illuminating aspects to his masterpiece (and yes they do exist in epic fantasy) series A Song of Ice and Fire, which due to its multiple perspectives and often times subtle narrative at once offers the chance of being exposed to provocative information as well as the opportunity to be strung along on multiple elaborate red herrings. He historically refrains from talking about specifics regarding plot and characters. Neither is it especially because of any tendency by Martin to be controversial in his statements. What I find oddly compelling is that when I read interviews of Martin, I get this image of a busy writer who would rather be doing anything else but talking about himself while he has a book to write, and damn it, there’s something admirable about that.

protoculture hoarding, devil fruit eating, chilling in a house of leaves. Catch me @biglob or Jenius.blog

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game of thrones

Playin’ with Ice and Fire: A Game of Thoughts | Eddard Stark Chapter 33

She’s new, she’s the re-re-reader.  She’s the newbie, she’s the spoilery vet.  Together they’re rereading George R.R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones and getting their POV on.  Today they react to Chapter 33: Stupid Ned Stark.

Elena Nola is the imperial editrix for the BSC empire. She likes genre books, weird movies, and obscure references. She lives in New Orleans, where almost every day is good enough for good times.  Contrary to dogma, Rachel Parker is the mind-killer. She is a nerd, writer, and art historian living in Brooklyn, NY. You can read more of her posts at scienceofdiscontent.blogspot.com, or follow @DarthRachel on twitter.

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game of thrones

Playin’ with Ice and Fire: A Game of Thoughts | Arya (Chapter 32)

She’s new, she’s the re-re-reader.  She’s the  newbie, she’s the spoilery vet.  Together they’re rereading George R.R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones and getting their POV on.  Today they react to Chapter 32 with everyone’s favorite: Arya Stark!

Elena Nola is the imperial editrix for the BSC empire. She likes genre books, weird movies, and obscure references. She lives in New Orleans, where almost every day is good enough for good times.  Contrary to dogma, Rachel Parker is the mind-killer. She is a nerd, writer, and art historian living in Brooklyn, NY. You can read more of her posts at scienceofdiscontent.blogspot.com, or follow @DarthRachel on twitter.

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scott lynch

For Love of Locke Lamora – Scott Lynch Interview

My guest today is a less than a week away from seeing his debut hit the shelves in the U. and a month away until it debuts in the U.S. The book, The Lies of Locke Lamora, is the first installment in a planned seven book cycle titled The Gentlemen Bastards.

I first read the book in October of last year, reviewed it, and after reading it knew that Scott Lynch was somebody I needed to talk to.

protoculture hoarding, devil fruit eating, chilling in a house of leaves. Catch me @biglob or Jenius.blog

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memento

12 Time-Twisted Crime Films

It’s time to spring forward, as the saying goes. What daylight savings actually saves is beyond me. Just another way of making me wake up earlier than sunrise. Twisting time has worked a whole lot better in crime cinema.

+Matthew Funk is a social media consultant, professional marketing copywriter and writing mentor. He is the editor of the Genre section of the critically acclaimed zine, FictionDaily and Full Stop. Winner of the Spinetingler award for Best Short Story on the Web 2010, M. C. Funk has been published at numerous sites online, indexed at his Web site, and in print with Needle Magazine, Howl, 6S and Crime Factory. He is represented by Stacia J. N. Decker of the Donald Maass Literary Agency.

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game of thrones

Playin’ With Ice And Fire: A Game of Thoughts | Tyrion Chapter 31

She’s new, she’s the re-re-reader.  She’s the newbie, she’s the spoilery vet.  Together they’re rereading George R.R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones and getting their POV on.  Today they react to Chapter 31, a Tyrion Lannister chapter.

Elena Nola is the imperial editrix for the BSC empire. She likes genre books, weird movies, and obscure references. She lives in New Orleans, where almost every day is good enough for good times.  Contrary to dogma, Rachel Parker is the mind-killer. She is a nerd, writer, and art historian living in Brooklyn, NY. You can read more of her posts at scienceofdiscontent.blogspot.com, or follow @DarthRachel on twitter.

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hal duncan

The Latest Teacup Tempest – Escapism & Elitism in Publishing

Elitism, escapism, world-building, blah blah blah. I’ve had my head down in terms of forums and blog-brouhahs. There’s a lot of, um, passion being thrown about, which is a good thing — it’s nice to know people give a fuck — but to be honest, I think a lot of the argument involves people talking at cross-purposes, people defending something that they think others are attacking, attacking something that they think others are defending, people saying that they’re not attacking / defending something in the way that other people think they are, but actually attacking / defending something else entirely, something which is worth attacking / defending… as opposed to what other people “seem to be” defending / attacking and so on, and on, and on, and on, and ever on, like the last one million pages of climbing up a fucking mountain at the end of Tolkien’s Lordy-Lordy-Massuh-Ah’s-Ah-Gonna-Carry-You-Massuh-Frodo of the Rings.

What?

Hal Duncan is a sodomitic Scots smoker who staggered drunkenly into the SF Café in 2005 with his debut, VELLUM, and now has various novels, novellas, short stories, poems and essays circling in print or the aether. Further scribblings and rantings can be found at www.halduncan.com.

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Jia Zhangke

Paris in a Beijing Suburb: The Failure of Capitalism in The World of Jia Zhangke

Jia Zhangke is not only the best filmmaker to emerge from China’s sixth generation of filmmakers, but also widely regarded as one of the most important and vital directors working today by both his peers and the critics. The World (Shìjiè) is his fourth film and the first to be set outside of his native province of Shanxi, although a number of characters are from Shanxi and communicate with each other in the Shanxi dialect.

A lifelong lover of fantastic literature and sequential art, Paul Smith is a post graduate philosophy student and the man behind the up and coming literary criticism blog, Empty Your Heart of its Mortal Dream. If he could be any comic book superhero, he would be Blackagar Boltagon.

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game of thrones

Playin’ with Ice and Fire: A Game of Thoughts | Eddard Chapter 30

She’s new, she’s the re-re-reader.  She’s the newbie, she’s the spoilery vet.  Together they’re rereading George R.R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones and getting their POV on.  Today they react to Chapter 30, an Eddard Stark chapter.

Elena Nola is the imperial editrix for the BSC empire. She likes genre books, weird movies, and obscure references. She lives in New Orleans, where almost every day is good enough for good times.  Contrary to dogma, Rachel Parker is the mind-killer. She is a nerd, writer, and art historian living in Brooklyn, NY. You can read more of her posts at scienceofdiscontent.blogspot.com, or follow @DarthRachel on twitter.

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game of thrones

Playin’ with Ice and Fire: A Game of Thoughts | Sansa Chapter 29

She’s new, she’s the re-re-reader.  She’s the newbie, she’s the spoilery vet.  Together they’re rereading George R.R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones and getting their POV on.  Next up they react to Chapter 29: Sansa.

Elena Nola is the imperial editrix for the BSC empire. She likes genre books, weird movies, and obscure references. She lives in New Orleans, where almost every day is good enough for good times.  Contrary to dogma, Rachel Parker is the mind-killer. She is a nerd, writer, and art historian living in Brooklyn, NY. You can read more of her posts at scienceofdiscontent.blogspot.com, or follow @DarthRachel on twitter.

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game of thrones

Playin’ with Ice and Fire: A Game of Thoughts | Catelyn Chapter 28

She’s new, she’s the re-re-reader.  She’s the newbie, she’s the spoilery vet.  Together they’re rereading George R.R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones and getting their POV on.  Today they react to Chapter 28, a Catelyn chapter.

Elena Nola is the imperial editrix for the BSC empire. She likes genre books, weird movies, and obscure references. She lives in New Orleans, where almost every day is good enough for good times.  Contrary to dogma, Rachel Parker is the mind-killer. She is a nerd, writer, and art historian living in Brooklyn, NY. You can read more of her posts at scienceofdiscontent.blogspot.com, or follow @DarthRachel on twitter.

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avatar

The Lost Airbender | Notes from New Sodom

Racebending and Lifestyle Theft

“If you go exploring in another culture only as a way of improving yourself and your work, that’s blatantly appropriative. Rose Fox, “A Whiff of Colonialism,” Publishers Weekly

Another day, another shitstorm in the SF Café. A couple of months back, some of you might recall, it was one Young Turk turned Old Guard with an ill-fated article on international SF, a Caesar of dubious pontification that met a Senate of aggravated responses. Others said all that has to be said about the article at the time, and it’s sorta blown over now, so I’m not going to add my dagger; but in a couple of the responses (or responses to responses,) as the entrails slipped to the ground, fingers were pointed and the dread words whispered: cultural appropriation. As in the quote above, the link was made.

Hal Duncan is a sodomitic Scots smoker who staggered drunkenly into the SF Café in 2005 with his debut, VELLUM, and now has various novels, novellas, short stories, poems and essays circling in print or the aether. Further scribblings and rantings can be found at www.halduncan.com.

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game of thrones

Playin’ with Ice and Fire: A Game of Thoughts: Eddard Chapter 27

She’s new, she’s the re-re-reader.  She’s the  newbie, she’s the spoilery vet.  Together they’re rereading George R.R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones and getting their POV on.  Today they react to Chapter 27, Eddard.

Elena Nola is the imperial editrix for the BSC empire. She likes genre books, weird movies, and obscure references. She lives in New Orleans, where almost every day is good enough for good times.  Contrary to dogma, Rachel Parker is the mind-killer. She is a nerd, writer, and art historian living in Brooklyn, NY. You can read more of her posts at scienceofdiscontent.blogspot.com, or follow @DarthRachel on twitter.

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big lebowski

Takin’ ‘er Easy for All Us Sinners: The World According to Jeffrey Lebowski

The Big Lebowski enjoys what is probably the largest cult following of all the cult-attracting films of Joel and Ethan Coen, and has pretty much since its release over a decade ago.  And “cult” has become more apropos a term since the advent of Dudeism, the official unofficial philosophy of Jeffrey “the Dude” Lebowski (dudeism.com). Dudeism teaches that we all need to just take it easy, man, and on a personal note, if there is one thing I’ve figured out about myself in the past few years, it’s that I am not perfectly calm here.  But I am learning to abide by adhering to a pretty strict Dude regimen.  Here’s some of the stuff I’ve figured out.

+Jimmy Callaway rules over Criminal Complex with an iron fist in a Playtex glove. He lives in San Diego, California.

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game of thrones

Playin’ with Ice and Fire: A Game of Thoughts | Jon Chapter 26

She’s new, she’s the re-re-reader.  She’s the newbie, she’s the spoilery vet.  Together they’re rereading George R.R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones and getting their POV on.  Today they react to Chapter 26, a Jon Snow chapter.

Elena Nola is the imperial editrix for the BSC empire. She likes genre books, weird movies, and obscure references. She lives in New Orleans, where almost every day is good enough for good times.  Contrary to dogma, Rachel Parker is the mind-killer. She is a nerd, writer, and art historian living in Brooklyn, NY. You can read more of her posts at scienceofdiscontent.blogspot.com, or follow @DarthRachel on twitter.

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game of thrones

Playin’ with Ice and Fire: A Game of Thoughts | Eddard Chapter 25

She’s new, she’s the re-re-reader.  She’s the newbie, she’s the spoilery vet.  Together they’re rereading George R.R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones and getting their POV on.  Today they react to Chapter 25 – a Ned Stark chapter.

Elena Nola is the imperial editrix for the BSC empire. She likes genre books, weird movies, and obscure references. She lives in New Orleans, where almost every day is good enough for good times.  Contrary to dogma, Rachel Parker is the mind-killer. She is a nerd, writer, and art historian living in Brooklyn, NY. You can read more of her posts at scienceofdiscontent.blogspot.com, or follow @DarthRachel on twitter.

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district 9

Top 10 Science Fiction Movies of the Decade 2000-2009

All the end-of-year/decade lists going up right now inspired me to hit one up of my own. And all the hype about James Cameron’s Avatar, which is being trumpeted as some sort of monumental science fiction success, gave me just the topic:  the actual best science fiction movies of the aughts.

Elena Nola is the imperial movie critic and the colder half of the Ladies of Ice and Fire.

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game of thrones

Playin’ with Ice and Fire: A Game of Thoughts | Daenerys Chapter 23

She’s new, she’s the re-re-reader.  She’s the newbie, she’s the spoilery vet.  Together they’re rereading George R.R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones and getting their POV on.  Today they react to Chapter 23- Daenerys.

Elena Nola is the imperial editrix for the BSC empire. She likes genre books, weird movies, and obscure references. She lives in New Orleans, where almost every day is good enough for good times.  Contrary to dogma, Rachel Parker is the mind-killer. She is a nerd, writer, and art historian living in Brooklyn, NY. You can read more of her posts at scienceofdiscontent.blogspot.com, or follow @DarthRachel on twitter.

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game of thrones

Playin’ with Ice and Fire: A Game of Thoughts | Arya Stark Chapter 22

She’s new, she’s the re-re-reader.  She’s the newbie, she’s the spoilery vet.  Together they’re rereading George R.R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones and getting their POV on. Today they move on to Chapter 22, an Arya chapter.

Elena Nola is the imperial editrix for the BSC empire. She likes genre books, weird movies, and obscure references. She lives in New Orleans, where almost every day is good enough for good times.  Contrary to dogma, Rachel Parker is the mind-killer. She is a nerd, writer, and art historian living in Brooklyn, NY. You can read more of her posts at scienceofdiscontent.blogspot.com, or follow @DarthRachel on twitter.

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game of thrones

Playin’ With Ice and Fire: A Game of Thoughts | Tyrion Lannister Chapter 21

She’s new, she’s the re-re-reader.  She’s the  newbie, she’s the spoilery vet.  Together they’re g-mashin’ George R.R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones and getting their POV on.  Today they move on to Chapter 21, a Tyrion chapter.

Elena Nola is the imperial editrix for the BSC empire. She likes genre books, weird movies, and obscure references. She lives in New Orleans, where almost every day is good enough for good times.  Contrary to dogma, Rachel Parker is the mind-killer. She is a nerd, writer, and art historian living in Brooklyn, NY. You can read more of her posts at scienceofdiscontent.blogspot.com, or follow @DarthRachel on twitter.

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game of thrones

Playin’ With Ice and Fire: A Game of Thoughts | Ned Chapter 20

She’s new, she’s the re-re-reader.  She’s the newbie, she’s the spoilery vet.  Together they’re rereading George R.R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones and getting their POV on.  Today they move on to Chapter 20, a Ned Stark chapter.

Yes, loyal Playin’ with Ice and Fire readers, Elena is no longer riding solo on this project.  The inimitable Darth Rachel of the comments and the Dune re-read has stepped in to fill the shoes of the re-reader, so starting today you will once more have both perspectives on the chapters. Jay is trash.

Also starting today, you will have a predictable schedule for postings: every Monday.  There might be occasional extra chapters thrown in, so it’s always a good idea to check back more often or follow one of our news feeds, but at the very least you can rest assured that at least one thing will go right with every Monday.

Announcements over, so let’s get our perspectives on!

Elena Nola is the imperial editrix for the BSC empire. She likes genre books, weird movies, and obscure references. She lives in New Orleans, where almost every day is good enough for good times.  Contrary to dogma, Rachel Parker is the mind-killer. She is a nerd, writer, and art historian living in Brooklyn, NY. You can read more of her posts at scienceofdiscontent.blogspot.com, or follow @DarthRachel on twitter.

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game of thrones

Playin’ With Ice and Fire: A Game of Thoughts | Jon Snow Chapter 19

She’s new, I’m the re-reader. She’s the newbie, I’m the spoilery vet. Together She’s  g-mashin’ George R.R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones and getting here POV on. Today she moves on to Chapter 19, a Jon Snow POV chapter.

Elena Nola is the imperial movie critic and the colder half of the Ladies of Ice and Fire.

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game of thrones

Playin’ With Ice and Fire: A Game of Thoughts | Catelyn Stark Chapter 18

She’s new, I’m the re-reader. She’s the  newbie, I’m the spoilery vet. Together She’s  g-mashin’ George R.R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones and getting here POV on. Today she moves on to Chapter 18, a Catelyn Stark POV chapter.

Elena Nola is the imperial movie critic and the colder half of the Ladies of Ice and Fire.

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game of thrones

Playin’ With Ice and Fire: A Game of Thoughts | Bran Stark Chapter 17

She’s new, I’m the re-reader. She’s the newbie, I’m the spoilery vet. Together we are rereading George R.R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones and getting our POV on. Today we hit Chapter 17, a Bran Stark POV chapter.

Elena Nola is the imperial editrix for the Boomtron empire. She likes genre books, weird movies, and obscure references. She lives in New Orleans, where almost every day is good enough for good times. You can follow her reviews and commentaries at Boomtron.

Jay is a silent partner in Extensive Enterprises, a bastard child of Amber, an Eleint Soletaken, a probable Targaryen, and was the second-to-last Starfighter.

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Songs of Hate, Part Two: The Visual Instead Of The Verbal

We left off last column with a run-down on the first of actress/singer Meiko Kaji’s Female Prisoner Scorpion series and a hint that things were about to get pretty weird. Well, the phantasmagoria goes full bore in the second film in the series, Female Prisoner Scorpion: Jailhouse 41 (Joshuu Sasori – Dai 41 Zakkyobo). Filmed, like its predecessor, in 1972, here Nami Matsushima, aka Sasori (scorpion), is pretty much fully transformed into something supernatural and, like Lee Marvin’s Walker/Parker in Point Blank, begins to haunt the minds of all who’ve wronged her. She even transcends time and space through some stunningly psychedelic timeshifts and edits. At one point, as Sasori hacks away at her foe, she literally slashes through the “screen”, taking us to a different environment.  It’s completely, beautifully bonkers.

+Cameron Ashley lives and works in Brunswick, Australia. Aside from the local bar staff who know him too well, he toils away in obscurity on numerous pulpy projects, including Crime Factory. He lived in Japan from 2003-2006 and still works through his bizarre bi-polar love/hate (mainly love these days) for the place through his column at this site. Join him as he works it all out.

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roger rabbit

Forget It, Eddie, It’s Toontown – The Crime Fiction Roots Of Roger Rabbit

My friend’s dad took us to see Willow one sunny summer’s day in 1988.  It was a good movie and all, but honestly I was extremely distracted throughout the whole thing.  All I could think about was one of the coming attractions I’d seen for a film called Who Framed Roger Rabbit.  I’d seen Bedknobs and Broomsticks and other fare where cartoons were mixed with live action.  But this flick looked much different—it had sex and violence and swear words.  Mix those with cartoons, and it was everything my almost adolescent heart could desire.

+Jimmy Callaway rules over Criminal Complex with an iron fist in a Playtex glove. He lives in San Diego, California.

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smurfs

Origin of Peyo’s Smurfs

Whether a rookie card or the first appearance of a comic character I was trained by guides to value more things than others things in hobbies and recently I picked up some related to the Smurfs, a cartoon that was on constant rotation when I was really young.

The Smurfs, however, I think are MUCH older than most people think.

protoculture hoarding, devil fruit eating, chilling in a house of leaves. Catch me @biglob or Jenius.blog

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Doctor Doom | Badass of the Week

A special edition of Badass of the Week by Ben Thompson

“Show me the puny mortal who does not tremble at the name of Doctor Doom!”

I’ve always held a soft spot in my heart for comic books characters who go out there with no inherent super-powers and roll the dice in toe-to-toe combat against genetically-engineered superhuman mutant warriors from some quadrant of space where people are born with the muscular density of a rhinoceros.  Never is this more true than in situations where the aforementioned character is a sort-of-misunderstood supervillain who wants nothing more than an eternal end to war, conflict, substandard wages, hunger, and illiteracy – and who seeks to accomplish these lofty idealistic goals by violently obliterating all who stand in his way and replacing every government on Earth-616 with an autocratic New World Order devoted to worshipping him as a living God among mortals.

Ben Thompson graduated from Florida State University in 2002 with degrees in History and Political Science. He has run the popular website badassoftheweek.com since 2004, and has written humorous history-related columns for outlets such as Cracked, Fangoria, Penthouse, and the American Mustache Institute. His first book, BADASS: A Relentless Onslaught of the Toughest Warlords, Vikings, Samurai, Pirates, Gunfighters, and Military Commanders to Ever Live was published worldwide by HarperCollins in October 2009. A second book, titled BADASS: Birth of a Legend: Spine-Crushing Tales of the Most Merciless Gods, Heroes, Villains, and Mythical Beings Ever Envisioned, was released by the same publisher in March 2011.

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gijoe

G.I. Joe Rawhides – 30 Years Later, the G.I. Joe Animated Movie

Back in 1987 fans of G.I. Joe got an animated film that has gone on to become a pretty divisive movie during a time which was probably the height of or toward the end of the height of the popularity for the G.I. Joe brand. Much like the Transformers animated film from the previous year it can quite plainly be seen as a feature length commercial for a new wave, maybe even a generation, of characters. I was overseas as a kid and when one of my friends got this on VHS it was HUGE news in my school, a part of a close knit U.S. military community in Italy. Back then it was just awesome and when you click it on now you realize that the intro remains one of the best in cartoon history.

protoculture hoarding, devil fruit eating, chilling in a house of leaves. Catch me @biglob or Jenius.blog

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Hou Hsiao Hsien

Love Throughout The Ages: Hou Hsiao-Hsien’s Three Times

The Taiwanese New Wave that emerged in the 80s provided two of the best film makers of the modern age in the late Edward Yang and Hou Hsiao-Hsien. Jonathan Rosenbaum has compared both of their work to that of Iranian filmmaker Abbas Kiarostami, in that they eschew the usual pacing and narrative structure of a film in order to portray life in a way that is more realistic. Both of their films are grounded in the troubled history of Taiwan and are deeply affected by the past that they are engaging, that of twentieth century Taiwan. Yang chooses to set most of his films in a contemporary setting (of his films, only the short film Expectations and his epic A Brighter Summer Day are set in the past) in an urban setting, usually Taipei, his characters tend to be middle class or upwardly mobile, but at heart of these films were the very human consequences of the legacy of Japanese rule and the onset of Westernization.  Hou Hsiao-Hsien’s films in comparison tend to be set in the past, in rural areas, focusing on the lives of primarily working class characters as they go about their day to day life.

A lifelong lover of fantastic literature and sequential art, Paul Smith is a post graduate philosophy student and the man behind the up and coming literary criticism blog, Empty Your Heart of its Mortal Dream. If he could be any comic book superhero, he would be Blackagar Boltagon.

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game of thrones

Playin’ With Ice and Fire – A Game of Thoughts | Eddard Stark Chapter 16

She’s new, I’m the re-reader. Together we are rereading George R.R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones and getting our POV on. Back to Eddard Stark!

Elena Nola is the imperial editrix for the Boomtron empire. She likes genre books, weird movies, and obscure references. She lives in New Orleans, where almost every day is good enough for good times. You can follow her reviews and commentaries at Boomtron.

Jay is a silent partner in Extensive Enterprises, a bastard child of Amber, an Eleint Soletaken, a probable Targaryen, and was the second-to-last Starfighter.

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matrix

The Ten Greatest Henchmen In Movie History

Say you’re putting together a syndicate.  One of the first things that you are going to need is somebody to take care of your light work for you when words have run out.  As a means of determining the appropriate skill set for this oh-so-important addition to your workforce, the Complex has assembled a ranking of some of the more legendary henchman ever to grace the screen.  You know, as a way to gauge some of the qualities you might be looking for.

In ranking these heavies, extra points were earned for singularity of purpose, imperviousness to pain, and skill within the realm of hand-to-hand combat.  Points were taken away for any actions tantamount to a betrayal of the henchman’s employer, or conspicuous behavior likely to cause more trouble than harm.

Here’s how they shook out.

+Josh Converse work has appeared in Crime Factory, Plots with Guns, Black Heart Magazine, Out Of the Gutter, and A Twist of Noir. He is the only person to have ever simultaneously held the WBO and WBC middleweight and welterweight titles without any witnesses. Josh can talk his way out of any situation, particularly when on the cusp of runaway success. In 2010, he was the recipient of Nick Tosches’ final apology. He lives and works and eats cereal in Chicago.

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game of thrones

Before Game of Thrones -The Daenerys Targaryen Asimov Debut

Emilia Clarke has been heating up watercooler talk for five years now in HBO’s monster hit adaptation of George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire book series, Game of Thrones. Even as a veteran multiple re-reader of all of the books in the series that jumped on the literture before the turn of the century, I never thought that I’d see the day that “Khaleesi” would enter pop culture vernacular, a thought that was smashed when I got my 8-year old niece an “I’m not a Princess I’m a Khaleesi” t-shirt and she knew what it was. Move over Arthur C, Emilia is the Clarke of both speculative and reality affections.

protoculture hoarding, devil fruit eating, chilling in a house of leaves. Catch me @biglob or Jenius.blog

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james blond

DR. NO | The James Bond Zapiska

I’ll say it, and I don’t care who hears it: I love James Bond.  I love the style, the intrigue, the gadgets, the barely plausible villains.  I love dang near everything about Ian Fleming’s super-spy.  From the first time I was ever exposed to Bond as a kid, I was hooked.  I liked the fact that he was a hero that could control world events from sort of a behind-the-scenes position.  The stakes were high and slightly ridiculous.  He was a secret agent with a quick, resourceful mind, not a Schwarzenegger-esque action hero with ridiculous muscles and a huge, phallic machine gun nestled into his elbow.

Eric is a Denver based freelance writer and science fiction enthusiast who proudly holds a Creative Writing degree from the University of Arizona.

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end of summer

Everything is Transitory but the Family Remains: Yasujirō Ozu’s The End of Summer

Throughout his career, Yasujirō Ozu experimented with ensemble narrative. While it forms the core of his most famous film, one of the greatest films ever made, Tokyo Story, he first employed the style years earlier in Brothers and Sisters of the Toda Family. There is something particularly special about Ozu’s ensemble films in the way in which the lives of the characters within the film are entwined for better or for worse. The slow pacing and the rarity of real confrontation give the films what David Bordwell calls “calm”, the lives of the characters are a sort of quiet sadness that makes the tragedy more affecting.

A lifelong lover of fantastic literature and sequential art, Paul Smith is a post graduate philosophy student and the man behind the up and coming literary criticism blog, Empty Your Heart of its Mortal Dream. If he could be any comic book superhero, he would be Blackagar Boltagon.

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i spit on your grave

7 Toughest Comebacks in Crime Film

Crime heroes and villains got it rough. They’re usually up to the gills in trouble and their genre, unlike horror, doesn’t smile on its bad-asses soaking up too many bullets.

A fortunate – or unfortunate, if you’re a “the grave’s half empty” kind of person – few manage some superhuman comebacks. Whether by the power of a psychotic episode, sheer grit or timely medical attention, these crime film characters practically pull off an Easter miracle.

+Matthew Funk is a social media consultant, professional marketing copywriter and writing mentor. He is the editor of the Genre section of the critically acclaimed zine, FictionDaily and Full Stop. Winner of the Spinetingler award for Best Short Story on the Web 2010, M. C. Funk has been published at numerous sites online, indexed at his Web site, and in print with Needle Magazine, Howl, 6S and Crime Factory. He is represented by Stacia J. N. Decker of the Donald Maass Literary Agency.

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game of thrones

Playin’ with Ice and Fire – A Game of Thoughts | Sansa Stark Chapter 15

She’s new, I’m the re-reader. Together we are rereading George R.R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones and getting our POV on. First Sansa Stark chapter!

Elena Nola is the imperial editrix for the Boomtron empire. She likes genre books, weird movies, and obscure references. She lives in New Orleans, where almost every day is good enough for good times. You can follow her reviews and commentaries at Boomtron.

Jay is a silent partner in Extensive Enterprises, a bastard child of Amber, an Eleint Soletaken, a probable Targaryen, and was the second-to-last Starfighter.

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Rorschach

Batman or Rorschach? – Point/Counterpoint

o, who would you rather have operating just outside the law to protect your city?  Batman or Rorschach?  Discuss!

Elisabeth Rappe was once an aspiring medievalist, now a writer for Film.com. A movie & video game loving bowl of awesome. Screw the cereal, I’m the prize inside!

Eric Schlelein is a Denver based freelance writer and science fiction enthusiast who proudly holds a Creative Writing degree from the University of Arizona.

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Ashes of Time Redux: Wong Kar-wai as a Poet of Memory

In 2046, Wong Kar-wai’s eighth film, Tony Leung Chiu-wai plays a journalist and writer (the same character he plays in In the Mood for Love), that begins to write science-fiction as an additional income when journalist work dries up. The story that he writes, also called 2046, set in the distant future about people who travel to 2046 (whether it is a time or a place is never explained) in order to live in the memories of their lost loves, a place from where no one has ever returned. Scenes from 2046 punctuate the narrative as a parallel as Leung comes to realise that he is writing about himself.

A lifelong lover of fantastic literature and sequential art, Paul Smith is a post graduate philosophy student and the man behind the up and coming literary criticism blog, Empty Your Heart of its Mortal Dream. If he could be any comic book superhero, he would be Blackagar Boltagon.

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falkor

Shai-Hulud from DUNE or Falkor the Luck Dragon from THE NEVERENDING STORY? – Point/Counterpoint

The question on everyone’s lips, which we humbly seek to answer today,Which is the better ridiculous mode of transportation, Shai-Hulud from Frank Herbert’s Dune series, or Falkor the Luck Dragon from The Neverending Story?

Elisabeth Rappe was once an aspiring medievalist, now a writer for Film.com. A movie & video game loving bowl of awesome. Screw the cereal, I’m the prize inside!

Eric Schlelein is a Denver based freelance writer and science fiction enthusiast who proudly holds a Creative Writing degree from the University of Arizona.

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Badass Moments in Sci-Fi History

I probably don’t need to tell the readers here that science-fiction is probably one of the most badass genres of fiction to ever explode out of someone’s brain.  I mean, any genre in which genetically modified cyborgs, hyperdrive-capable spaceships, chest-bursting aliens, disintegration death rays, handheld nuclear bombs, mutant apocalypses, and skimpy gold bikinis are the norm is OK in my book, and anybody who doesn’t think that stuff kicks more ass than an alcoholic donkey-herder really needs to get their priorities straight.

Ben Thompson graduated from Florida State University in 2002 with degrees in History and Political Science. He has run the popular website badassoftheweek.com since 2004, and has written humorous history-related columns for outlets such as Cracked, Fangoria, Penthouse, and the American Mustache Institute. His first book, BADASS: A Relentless Onslaught of the Toughest Warlords, Vikings, Samurai, Pirates, Gunfighters, and Military Commanders to Ever Live was published worldwide by HarperCollins in October 2009. A second book, titled BADASS: Birth of a Legend: Spine-Crushing Tales of the Most Merciless Gods, Heroes, Villains, and Mythical Beings Ever Envisioned, was released by the same publisher in March 2011.

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alias

The 5 Worst TV Crime Show Finales

You’d think it would be easy to wrap up a crime TV series. Punish the bad guys, save the day and solve the mystery. The audience can turn off the set with their belief in an ordered universe confirmed. Easy as it may seem, plenty of crime shows flip out and faceplant when it’s time for their finale.

Some try to get too clever or artistic. Some fling the story outside the genre in a geeky attempt to surprise their viewers. Most just don’t know what the Hell they’re doing.

+Matthew Funk is a social media consultant, professional marketing copywriter and writing mentor. He is the editor of the Genre section of the critically acclaimed zine, FictionDaily and Full Stop. Winner of the Spinetingler award for Best Short Story on the Web 2010, M. C. Funk has been published at numerous sites online, indexed at his Web site, and in print with Needle Magazine, Howl, 6S and Crime Factory. He is represented by Stacia J. N. Decker of the Donald Maass Literary Agency.

Playin’ with Ice and Fire A Game of Thoughts | Catelyn Stark Chapter 14

It’s been a long time. We should have never left you. Without a dope post to step to. Forgot about us? She’s new, I’m the re-reader. Together we are rereading George R.R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones and getting our POV on.  We return covering everyone’s favorite character, Catelyn Stark!

Elena Nola is the imperial editrix for the Boomtron empire. She likes genre books, weird movies, and obscure references. She lives in New Orleans, where almost every day is good enough for good times. You can follow her reviews and commentaries at Boomtron.

Jay is a silent partner in Extensive Enterprises, a bastard child of Amber, an Eleint Soletaken, a probable Targaryen, and was the second-to-last Starfighter.

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seven

6 Most Twisted Pranks in Crime Film

A perfect crime always has a bit of a prank to it. When you’re breaking the law, you’re duping society, after all. You play a joke on old Lady Justice. The punchline just happens to be a few steamer trunks of bearer bonds or a well-buried corpse.

But some crimes take the yukks to the next level. These law-shattering shenanigans score big on style points, surprise or sheer humor. And when it’s done for the sake of cinema, twisted pranks can leave their kink marks in our memory for years to come.

Here are 6 Twisted Pranks in Crime Film that never fail to split our sides or sicken our stomachs.

+Matthew Funk is a social media consultant, professional marketing copywriter and writing mentor. He is the editor of the Genre section of the critically acclaimed zine, FictionDaily and Full Stop. Winner of the Spinetingler award for Best Short Story on the Web 2010, M. C. Funk has been published at numerous sites online, indexed at his Web site, and in print with Needle Magazine, Howl, 6S and Crime Factory. He is represented by Stacia J. N. Decker of the Donald Maass Literary Agency.

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Suzhou River:

Dredging Suzhou River: Artifice and Art

At the very beginning of Lou Ye’s Suzhou River (Sūzhōu Hé) the unnamed and unseen narrator and protagonist whom works as a freelance cameraman tells the viewer that he is fine filming anything just so long as the client doesn’t complain. His camera, he says, shows things the way that they are. This statement recalls that famous one of Bruno Forestier in Godard’s Le Petit Soldat (his second feature film and first to star his muse and future wife, Anna Karina), “La photographie, c’est la vérité, et le cinéma, c’est vingt-quatre fois la vérité par seconde” – “Photography is truth, and cinema is truth 24 times per second”.

A lifelong lover of fantastic literature and sequential art, Paul Smith is a post graduate philosophy student and the man behind the up and coming literary criticism blog, Empty Your Heart of its Mortal Dream. If he could be any comic book superhero, he would be Blackagar Boltagon.

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james bond

From Russia With Love | The James Bond Zapiska

Ah, the Cold War.  Growing up as I did in the Eighties, there was no greater Bad Guy in film or print as evil or subversive or insidious as the Russians.  They were the eternal enemy, lurking across the ocean at the business end of a fleet of ICBMs.  It was a time of uncertainty, of mistrust, of a vague feeling that global nuclear catastrophe could happen at any time.  Not just that you might die, or your brother in the service might die, but that everyone might die.  That the culmination of human endeavors to this point might just end after the hasty push of a big red button.

Eric is a Denver based freelance writer and science fiction enthusiast who proudly holds a Creative Writing degree from the University of Arizona.

The better sci-fi/fantasy pet? Spot from Star Trek: TNG, or Oy from Stephen King’s Dark Tower | Point/Counterpoint

This week we seek to answer that most pressing of questions: Which is the better sci-fi/fantasy pet?  Spot from Star Trek: The Next Generation, or Oy from Stephen King’s Dark Tower series?

Elisabeth Rappe was once an aspiring medievalist, now a writer for Film.com. A movie & video game loving bowl of awesome. Screw the cereal, I’m the prize inside!

Eric Schlelein is a Denver based freelance writer and science fiction enthusiast who proudly holds a Creative Writing degree from the University of Arizona.

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avalon

Authenticity in Mamoru Oshii’s Avalon

Before we begin, I would like to say a few brief words on the nature of this column. I believe it is impossible to talk about films without discussing what are considered spoilers, and to quote Jonathan Rosenbaum, “Is this form of worry a fit activity for grown-ups?” Therefore if you have an aversion to spoilers, I recommend that you do not read this column, consider this your only disclaimer.

A lifelong lover of fantastic literature and sequential art, Paul Smith is a post graduate philosophy student and the man behind the up and coming literary criticism blog, Empty Your Heart of its Mortal Dream. If he could be any comic book superhero, he would be Blackagar Boltagon.

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heat

5 Terrifying Crime Films That Actually Happened

There are plenty of crime films that straddle some scary territory: Serial killer suspense stories, “realistic” horror and a couple gangster-style stories with eerie elements. But even though Hollywood gets accused of slathering on the ultraviolence with a spatula, that’s often just what we want to believe to protect our nerves.

+Matthew Funk is a social media consultant, professional marketing copywriter and writing mentor. He is the editor of the Genre section of the critically acclaimed zine, FictionDaily and Full Stop. Winner of the Spinetingler award for Best Short Story on the Web 2010, M. C. Funk has been published at numerous sites online, indexed at his Web site, and in print with Needle Magazine, Howl, 6S and Crime Factory. He is represented by Stacia J. N. Decker of the Donald Maass Literary Agency.

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meiko kaji

Songs of Hate: Meiko Kaji and Female Prisoner Scorpion (Part One)

She sold over a million albums, her films inspired much of Kill Bill, and when she didn’t want to do what she was asked of by executives, she said uh-uh and split for greener pastures. Her name is Meiko Kaji. Possessed with a confidence and an intensity that saw her type-cast as one of Japan’s toughest bad girls, Meiko’s beauty and fierce you’re-a-fucking-dead-man stare, framed by tresses of long jet-black hair (frequently shot in weirdly-angled extreme close-up), has made her a global cult film icon.

+Cameron Ashley lives and works in Brunswick, Australia. Aside from the local bar staff who know him too well, he toils away in obscurity on numerous pulpy projects, including Crime Factory. He lived in Japan from 2003-2006 and still works through his bizarre bi-polar love/hate (mainly love these days) for the place through his column at this site. Join him as he works it all out.

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cold fish

It’s Not The Quantity, It’s The Quality: Sion Sono’s COLD FISH

Back in my days teaching English in Japan, I raised the topic of murders and why they were so frequently extreme in Japan. One student actually said in reply, “It’s not the quantity, it’s the quality.” Kind of grimly funny, and a nice attempt at busting out some natural speech, but the thing is, I totally got what he meant. I always believed that the severed heads stuck on school fence posts and the dismembered parts littered around cities, not to mention the extreme pornography, were a result of social repression that, in certain people, boiled up and manifested itself in horribly sick, violent and often public ways. It’s not exactly a long bow to draw, is it? There’s a reason Ian Buruma’s fascinating book on Japanese culture (and valuable aid to this project), Behind the Mask is called that. It’s not just a clever title.

+Cameron Ashley lives and works in Brunswick, Australia. Aside from the local bar staff who know him too well, he toils away in obscurity on numerous pulpy projects, including Crime Factory. He lived in Japan from 2003-2006 and still works through his bizarre bi-polar love/hate (mainly love these days) for the place through his column at this site. Join him as he works it all out.

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pulp fiction

Top 10 Restaurants In Crime Film

Crime films often make me hungry. Often the restaurant scenes are among the best remembered in crime flicks. The coffee shops and Italian kitchens and juke joints where criminal characters go to grab a bite or do dirt serve to define them.

+Matthew Funk is a social media consultant, professional marketing copywriter and writing mentor. He is the editor of the Genre section of the critically acclaimed zine, FictionDaily and Full Stop. Winner of the Spinetingler award for Best Short Story on the Web 2010, M. C. Funk has been published at numerous sites online, indexed at his Web site, and in print with Needle Magazine, Howl, 6S and Crime Factory. He is represented by Stacia J. N. Decker of the Donald Maass Literary Agency.

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dumbo

Dumbo Soars Back Into Our Lives

Dumbo!

Disney has somehow pulled these live action versions of their classic and loved animated features off. While the story of Favreau’s Jungle Book didn’t blow me away I have to admit it crossed a visual boundary I wasn’t prepared to pass when I went into the theater and Beauty and Beast made over a billion dollars and it’s hard for me to believe The Lion King isn’t going to do the same.

protoculture hoarding, devil fruit eating, chilling in a house of leaves. Catch me @biglob or Jenius.blog

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monsters

Gareth Edwards’ Monsters | Notes from New Sodom

In the Interests of Precision

This is not a review. If you want to know whether I think director Gareth Edwards’s debut feature Monsters is worth seeing, I do. Go see it. But this isn’t about how good I think it is, and why; it’s about what the film’s doing, how this strange fiction (the specific example and the form in general) works. Whether it works well or not, for you or me — I don’t give a shit. More than anything, I want to use it here to explore the sort of dynamics at play in strange fiction, because the movie addresses one aspect of that dynamics directly, proclaiming this in its very title. The film is about the device of the monstrum that drives many narratives, not least those we project onto reality.

Hal Duncan is a sodomitic Scots smoker who staggered drunkenly into the SF Café in 2005 with his debut, VELLUM, and now has various novels, novellas, short stories, poems and essays circling in print or the aether. Further scribblings and rantings can be found at www.halduncan.com.

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Heroic Bloodshed: John Woo in Hong Kong | Tokyo Drifter

John Woo makes cool films. His Hong Kong action films are amongst some of, if not the best, action movies ever made. Films like A Better Tomorrow and its sequel, A Better Tomorrow II, The Killer, and Once a Thief had high grosses that contributed to the golden age of Hong Kong Cinema during the eighties and early nineties. His work proved influential not only in Hong Kong, but also in the international scene, leading to interest in Hong Kong cinema in countries like the United Kingdom and America, and influencing a generation of non-Asian filmmakers. Woo would himself later make the transition to Hollywood, making films like Broken Arrow and Face/Off, sadly not up to the same standard as his earlier work. For a generation though, Woo defined what it meant to be cool. Gangsters started to dress like Chow Yun Fat in A Better Tomorrow, complete with Alain Delon sunglasses (which caused them to be sold out in Hong Kong). The over the top gun fight choreography, slickness, hint of black humour, and symbolism that has become cliché through uninspired repetition by Hollywood was fresh and exciting. As Bordwell says, he is the ultimate Hong Kong auteur, because when you were watching one of his films, you knew that it could only be a John Woo film.

A lifelong lover of fantastic literature and sequential art, Paul Smith is a post graduate philosophy student and the man behind the up and coming literary criticism blog, Empty Your Heart of its Mortal Dream. If he could be any comic book superhero, he would be Blackagar Boltagon.

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house of games

The Entertainers: 5 Essential Movies of Scam Cinema

Hollywood: it’s all a scam, isn’t it?

For all of our lives, the movies have promised us big, big things.  Action and adventure are just out there waiting for us.  Good always triumphs over evil.  A simple confusion of gender will result in a humorous situation.  And everybody is having way more sex than you.  Like the good little marks we all are, we run frantically to these show-biz con-men with fistfuls of dollars, just begging to be parted with our money and our senses.  And then as with any good con, once it’s all over, we stand there on the sidewalk, squinting in the sunlight, our dreams crushed by reality and our pockets empty.  The movies are the longest running scam in world history.

+Jimmy Callaway rules over Criminal Complex with an iron fist in a Playtex glove. He lives in San Diego, California.

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dan abnett

In the Black Library with Dan Abnett | Interview Part 1

For me this is the interview to end all interviews.

It’s not often one gets to interview a personal hero; I suspect this is mostly because heroes don’t enjoy mopping up fanboy drool, and frankly, who can blame them? This is going to be a little different from my other interviews, because while the others have been with relatively new talent, Dan Abnett has been writing for around 27 years and has done everything, and I do mean everything, from Marvel comics to Mr. Men, as well as a phenomenal novel set in a world of his own creation.

Phillip is an Existential Psychotherapist and Teacher by day and a writer, gamer and all round geek in the hours of darkness. He claims to be enjoying the creative process enormously and secretly harbours the hope of publishing a novel one day…

In and Out of The Big House: DOING TIME and 9 SOULS

By his own admission, noted Mangaka (pro comics creator) Kazuichi Hanawa had long been interested in themes of confinement. An early, unfinished experiment was a manga concerning a masked man locked up in a basement. It’s oddly appropriate then that Hanawa, a noted collector of replica firearms would, years later, be incarcerated in Hokkaido and serve roughly twenty months of a three-year sentence (December 1994-October 1996) after “trying out” some remodelled guns he’d acquired.

+Cameron Ashley lives and works in Brunswick, Australia. Aside from the local bar staff who know him too well, he toils away in obscurity on numerous pulpy projects, including Crime Factory. He lived in Japan from 2003-2006 and still works through his bizarre bi-polar love/hate (mainly love these days) for the place through his column at this site. Join him as he works it all out.

Playin’ With Ice and Fire – A Game of Thoughts | Tyrion Lannister Chapter 13

We back and Elena focuses on info dumping while I give props to days of   ‘yore.  Forgot about us? She’s new, I’m the re-reader.  We are continuing our reread of George R.R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones and getting our POV on.  We return covering everyone’s favorite Romeo, Tyrion Lannister!

Elena Nola is the imperial editrix for the Boomtron empire. She likes genre books, weird movies, and obscure references. She lives in New Orleans, where almost every day is good enough for good times. You can follow her reviews and commentaries at Boomtron.

Jay is a silent partner in Extensive Enterprises, a bastard child of Amber, an Eleint Soletaken, a probable Targaryen, and was the second-to-last Starfighter.

More Evil, the Borg or the Aliens? | Point/Counterpoint

In our never-ending quest to reduce the absurd, we offer the following Point/Counterpoint discussion:  Who is the better evil insidious race, the Borg, or the Aliens?

Elisabeth Rappe was once an aspiring medievalist, now a writer for Film.com. A movie & video game loving bowl of awesome. Screw the cereal, I’m the prize inside!

Eric Schlelein is a Denver based freelance writer and science fiction enthusiast who proudly holds a Creative Writing degree from the University of Arizona.

Playin’ with Ice and Fire – A Game of Thoughts | Eddard Stark Chapter 12

Elena and I agree on something! Oh, How we glitter! She’s new, I’m the re-reader. Together we are rereading George R.R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones and getting our POV on. We are back with a Ned Stark chapter and I waive the white flag as Elena gets kind of nice this week (and like Robert, I’d rather be hunting or wenching than blogging).

Elena Nola is the imperial editrix for the Boomtron empire. She likes genre books, weird movies, and obscure references. She lives in New Orleans, where almost every day is good enough for good times. You can follow her reviews and commentaries at Boomtron.

Jay is a silent partner in Extensive Enterprises, a bastard child of Amber, an Eleint Soletaken, a probable Targaryen, and was the second-to-last Starfighter.

Playin’ with Ice and Fire – A Game of Thoughts | Jon Snow Chapter 10

Comic Con? Losers. The well-adjusted cool saved their money, stayed home and refreshed until this update. I decided to put this up today so George R.R. himself could attend the gathering tomorrow. Among the people at NYCC this weekend is Elena (shower her with praise if you see her), but before she took the BSC jet to New York, she dropped of the next edition of our trek through A Game of Thrones. Who is Elena? She’s new, I’m the re-reader. Together we are rereading George R.R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones and getting our POV on. Let’s see what Jon Snow is up to!

Elena Nola is the imperial editrix for the Boomtron empire. She likes genre books, weird movies, and obscure references. She lives in New Orleans, where almost every day is good enough for good times. You can follow her reviews and commentaries at Boomtron.

Jay is a silent partner in Extensive Enterprises, a bastard child of Amber, an Eleint Soletaken, a probable Targaryen, and was the second-to-last Starfighter.

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let the right one in

Best Fantasy Movies of the Decade: 2000-2009

When I was asked to write a companion piece to my Best Science Fiction Movies of the Decade list, I thought it would be equally as easy.  I was wrong.  There were a lot of kind of good fantasy movies over the last 10 years, but not really a lot of great ones.  I think a top five or a top 15 list would have been easier–I had a hell of a time deciding on the last two slots on this list, because I think compelling arguments could have been made for other movies for each of those last picks.

Elena Nola is the imperial movie critic and the colder half of the Ladies of Ice and Fire.

Playin’ with Ice and Fire – A Game of Thoughts | Tyrion Lannister Chapter 9

She’s new, I’m the re-reader. Together we are rereading George R.R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones and getting our POV on. Let’s get to Tyrion Lannister!

Elena Nola is the imperial editrix for the Boomtron empire. She likes genre books, weird movies, and obscure references. She lives in New Orleans, where almost every day is good enough for good times. You can follow her reviews and commentaries at Boomtron.

Jay is a silent partner in Extensive Enterprises, a bastard child of Amber, an Eleint Soletaken, a probable Targaryen, and was the second-to-last Starfighter.

Charlie Adlard Interview – Portrait of the Artist as a Walking Dead Man

Back in the nineties, I had the pleasure of working with Charlie Adlard on Topp’s The X-Files comic.  Ages later, the man who draws The Walking Dead was kind enough to spend some time catching up on Skype.  And it all went something like this…

Stefan Petruchaspent his formative years moving between the big city and the suburbs, both of which made him prefer escapism. A fan of comic books, science fiction and horror since learning to read, he later added a love for all sorts of literary work, eventually learning that the very best fiction always brings you back to reality, so, really, there’s no way out.

Playin’ with Ice and Fire – A Game of Thoughts | Bran Stark Chapter 8

And we all fall down! So how did Elena react to Bran’s tumble? What does she predict? Does Jay even care about the little guy? Just who the hell are Elena and Jay? She’s new, I’m the re-reader. Together we are rereading George R.R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones and getting our POV on.

Elena Nola is the imperial editrix for the Boomtron empire. She likes genre books, weird movies, and obscure references. She lives in New Orleans, where almost every day is good enough for good times. You can follow her reviews and commentaries at Boomtron.

Jay is a silent partner in Extensive Enterprises, a bastard child of Amber, an Eleint Soletaken, a probable Targaryen, and was the second-to-last Starfighter.

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scott pilgrim

The Scott Pilgrim Girlfriend Test

So you’ve finally met a girl who seems cool.  Outlook: positive…except that you can’t figure out how to suss out her level of nerdery without offending her or seeming even geekier than you are by running through every conceivable point of geekiness she might secretly have.  Well, you’re in luck, because the graphic novel series Scott Pilgrim has been made into a movie that could literally double as a girlfriend test if your interests and/or lifestyle require a girl who is at the least tolerant of the geek in you.

Elena Nola is the imperial movie critic and the colder half of the Ladies of Ice and Fire.

Playin’ with Ice and Fire – A Game of Thoughts | Arya Stark Chapter 7

She’s new, I’m the re-reader. Together we are rereading George R.R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones and getting our POV on. The key word for the day is “hair” as we finally get to our first Arya Stark chapter.

Elena Nola is the imperial editrix for the Boomtron empire. She likes genre books, weird movies, and obscure references. She lives in New Orleans, where almost every day is good enough for good times. You can follow her reviews and commentaries at Boomtron.

Jay is a silent partner in Extensive Enterprises, a bastard child of Amber, an Eleint Soletaken, a probable Targaryen, and was the second-to-last Starfighter.

Playin’ with Ice and Fire – A Game of Thoughts | Catelyn Stark Chapter 6

She’s new, I’m the re-reader. The newbie and the spoilery vet. Together we are rereading George R.R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones and getting our POV on.  This week we revisit Catelyn Stark — and unlike our first encounter, she has Laney feelin’ something!

Elena Nola is the imperial editrix for the Boomtron empire. She likes genre books, weird movies, and obscure references. She lives in New Orleans, where almost every day is good enough for good times. You can follow her reviews and commentaries at Boomtron.

Jay is a silent partner in Extensive Enterprises, a bastard child of Amber, an Eleint Soletaken, a probable Targaryen, and was the second-to-last Starfighter.

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rai

10 VALIANT Comics to Own Before They Become Movies

I’ve done a couple of posts about VALIANT comics, regarding cameo appearances and highlighting what issues from the new (post-2012) VALIANT universe that may be worth keeping an eye on, but I thought it might be time too look at VALIANT as a whole now that we’ve got more than just rumors about VALIANT films with what seems to be a solid commitment and direction from Sony in bringing VALIANT to the big screen. I thought it might be time to drop a list of ten taking into account the entire rich history of VALIANT comics now that it’s just too late to buy them at near record low prices.

protoculture hoarding, devil fruit eating, chilling in a house of leaves. Catch me @biglob or Jenius.blog

Scam Artist Hall Of Fame: M. Sgt. E.G. Bilko

Welcome, dear friends and other suckers, to a new regular feature here at the Criminal Complex.  Yes, the Scam Artist Hall Of Fame, as demanded by none of you, will highlight those great men and women, fictional and non, who through their erudite shrewdness and intelligence part money from its fools.  Our inaugural inductee is none other than that captain of the cardsharps, the service’s own shuckster, Sergeant Bilko.

+Jimmy Callaway rules over Criminal Complex with an iron fist in a Playtex glove. He lives in San Diego, California.

Playin’ with Ice and Fire – A Game of Thoughts | Jon Snow Chapter 5

She’s new, I’m the re-reader. She’s the newbie, I’m the spoilery vet. Together we are rereading George R.R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones and getting our POV on. We now move on to the first Jon Snow chapter, and the classic meeting between him and G.O.A.T. candidate, Tyrion Lannister.

Elena Nola is the imperial editrix for the Boomtron empire. She likes genre books, weird movies, and obscure references. She lives in New Orleans, where almost every day is good enough for good times. You can follow her reviews and commentaries at Boomtron.

Jay is a silent partner in Extensive Enterprises, a bastard child of Amber, an Eleint Soletaken, a probable Targaryen, and was the second-to-last Starfighter.

Playin’ with Ice and Fire – A Game of Thoughts | Eddard Chapter 4

Bloody Roses! Time to get to know the Warden of North — Eddard Stark! She’s new, I’m the re-reader. She’s the fresh newbie, I’m the spoilery vet. Together we are playin’ with ice and fire, reading George R.R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones, getting our POV on. If you missed it, check out our thoughts on the third chapter (where we go to the free cities and meet Targaryens) from last week or check out our archives and read them from jump. Let’s get to Ned, and bring flowers and your respects for the crypt!

Elena Nola is the imperial editrix for the Boomtron empire. She likes genre books, weird movies, and obscure references. She lives in New Orleans, where almost every day is good enough for good times. You can follow her reviews and commentaries at Boomtron.

Jay is a silent partner in Extensive Enterprises, a bastard child of Amber, an Eleint Soletaken, a probable Targaryen, and was the second-to-last Starfighter.

Playin’ with Ice and Fire – A Game of Thoughts: Daenerys Chapter 3

Chapter 3 brings us Targaryens! She’s new, I’m the re-reader. She’s the newbie, I’m the spoilery vet. Together we are going through George R.R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones and getting our POV on. Check out our thoughts on the second chapter (our intro to Catelyn Stark) from last week, and now we move on to my girl, Dany Stormborn!

Elena Nola is the imperial editrix for the Boomtron empire. She likes genre books, weird movies, and obscure references. She lives in New Orleans, where almost every day is good enough for good times. You can follow her reviews and commentaries at Boomtron.

Jay is a silent partner in Extensive Enterprises, a bastard child of Amber, an Eleint Soletaken, a probable Targaryen, and was the second-to-last Starfighter.

Playin’ with Ice and Fire – A Game of Thoughts | Catelyn Chapter 2

The new hotness and old and busted. She’s new, I’m the re-reader. She’s the newbie, I’m the spoilery vet. Together we are  going George R.R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones and getting our POV on. You can check out our thoughts on the first chapter (Bran) from last week, and now we move on to the second chapter, told from the perspective of Catelyn Stark. Personally, I can’t wait to get away from all of these traitors and start reading about some Targaryens. Readers, thank you for the support on this feature!

Elena Nola is the imperial editrix for the Boomtron empire. She likes genre books, weird movies, and obscure references. She lives in New Orleans, where almost every day is good enough for good times. You can follow her reviews and commentaries at Boomtron.

Jay is a silent partner in Extensive Enterprises, a bastard child of Amber, an Eleint Soletaken, a probable Targaryen, and was the second-to-last Starfighter.

Playin’ with Ice and Fire – A Game of Thoughts | Bran Chapter 1

The new hotness and old and busted. She’s new, I’m the re-reader. Together we are reading George R.R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones and getting our POV on. You can check out our thoughts on the prologue that went up yesterday, and now we move on to the first chapter, which is a Bran Stark chapter.

Elena Nola is the imperial editrix for the Boomtron empire. She likes genre books, weird movies, and obscure references. She lives in New Orleans, where almost every day is good enough for good times. You can follow her reviews and commentaries at Boomtron.

Jay is a silent partner in Extensive Enterprises, a bastard child of Amber, an Eleint Soletaken, a probable Targaryen, and was the second-to-last Starfighter.

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game of thrones

Playin’ with Ice and Fire – A Game of Thoughts | The Prologue

‘Playin’ with Ice and Fire – A Game of Thoughts’ is a chapter-by-chapter read through of George R.R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones. Elena brings the perspective and fresh eyes of a new reader to A Song of Ice and Fire, and I offer the pseudo-wisdom of a re-reader’s experience (that is as official a spoiler warning you’re going to get–though new readers or those who haven’t read up to A Feast for Crows can still follow Elena’s views and enjoy the ride). She’s the new hotness and I’m old and busted. Elena will not be reading my portions, but we will have various themed supplementary posts as either of us deems fit to make sure we touch on important points and keep shit rockin’.

Elena Nola is the imperial editrix for the Boomtron empire. She likes genre books, weird movies, and obscure references. She lives in New Orleans, where almost every day is good enough for good times. You can follow her reviews and commentaries at Boomtron.

Jay is a silent partner in Extensive Enterprises, a bastard child of Amber, an Eleint Soletaken, a probable Targaryen, and was the second-to-last Starfighter.

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ninjak

Before Youtube, Ninjak Debuts with a Bloodshot Problem in VALIANT Comics

Okay, so Ninjak is going to be featured in an upcoming live action webseries on Youtube by Bat in the Sun, which considering they don’t do cosmetics tutorials is a reasonably big channel on youtube and has more subscribers/watchers than any American comic book has. I say American because I think One Piece still keeps comics alive and hovers around that 7 figure readership. I follow some entertainment channels on Youtube obsessively but can’t claim to have heard of them until the Ninjak announcement, which is no shade, this is just not really my type of thing, though I will admit that I did see an Epic Rap Battle pitting George R.R. Martin against J.R.R. Tolkien which was one of the funniest (and passed my fact check) things I’ve seen all year.

protoculture hoarding, devil fruit eating, chilling in a house of leaves. Catch me @biglob or Jenius.blog

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wonder woman

Gal Gadot Wonder Woman Makes World’s Finest a Trinity

For some time now I’ve been planning a theater room addition to one of my homes. I think often when such endeavors are planned we often start thinking about the least significant details first. After all, I won’t be the one doing the electrical work or heavy lifting, nor will I be laying down any foundation or building frames for walls. Much like when I was a kid, I would just be sitting around thinking about shit.

protoculture hoarding, devil fruit eating, chilling in a house of leaves. Catch me @biglob or Jenius.blog

 Back to Amberle & Brooks’ The Elfstones – MTV’s Shannara Chronicles Trailer 

I will admit that I’m pretty easy to please but this thing looks better than I could have imagined. I’d consider myself very well entrenched in the world(s) of Terry Brooks, including and perhaps mostly his Shannara output, even though I’m not a mega fan in that way being a The Lord of the Rings diehard won’t allow. That said, I’ve never been someone who doesn’t acknowledge both the historical significance of Terry Brooks as it relates to direct impact on the modern fantasy publishing landscape and market and that I used to check for Brooks every time I was in the Walden Books paper back section to see if the next Shannara installment had hit.<

Shame! Gut Takes from Mother’s Mercy – Game of Thrones Season 5 Finale

Mother’s Mercy. Just some gut reactions to the season 5 finale to Game of Thrones. I realize the internet broke with analysis from both people with early access to the show and events of the finale from day one, and I imagine there are a bunch of pieces on fan sites with great takes with book knowledge. I have close to decades of book knowledge, but for people who purely watch and experience Game of Thrones via HBO, nothing below is a spoiler in terms of book facts being brought in that reveal something that hasn’t already occurred.

protoculture hoarding, devil fruit eating, chilling in a house of leaves. Catch me @biglob or Jenius.blog

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game of thrones

What is the Queen’s Power in Game of Thrones? 

This is another question that popped up as a search term to get to the site. I’m going to be picking some of these out and answering them to the best of my ability, the first time I did this, skipping the at the very least weird, and at worst, criminal search terms that somehow lead people here. Yes, some of the actions in Game of Thrones are actually PG in comparison to some of them, and some of the not so cleaner recent ones are about Natalie Portman’s character in Leon: The Professional, that I think got an uptick because it was recently made available on netflix. Enough preamble though, today I field: What is the Queen’s Power in Game of Thrones?

protoculture hoarding, devil fruit eating, chilling in a house of leaves. Catch me @biglob or Jenius.blog

A Case for a VALIANT Shadowman Movie

I’m sure all VALIANT fans are aware of the recent announcement of a VALIANT and DMG relationship established to bring VALIANT characters to TV and the big screen. Prominent in the press release is Shadowman, a character that isn’t really prominent (like he’s not even around at all) in current VALIANT comics and I think if we took a poll would probably rank as the most disappointing of the regular comic releases, barring the possibility of Quantum & Woody which admittedly is a bit of an oddball title to classic VALIANT fans. I think Shadowman, even the one we saw in the comics recently, works for me seamlessly in the way some of the other titles don’t to a movie audience.

protoculture hoarding, devil fruit eating, chilling in a house of leaves. Catch me @biglob or Jenius.blog

Judging Jorah Mormont as Daenerys Targaryen’s Champion

A lot things happened in last week’s episode that people want to talk about a lot more — and oddly I think that particular one was one of the better shot, edited, and acted scenes in a episode that was otherwise kind of a disaster — but I wanted to go into some other directions, namely that of a line by Tyrion regarding Jorah Mormont. I think for TV watchers it would be easy to forget that Jorah is the son of Jeor, and the Valyrian sword Jon Snow wields, Long Claw, was Jorah’s sword that he left behind before he went into exile. Also, if you recall, a couple episodes back Stannis was telling Davos about how a ten year old Northern Lord sent back a letter in response to him desiring their allegiance, and basically telling him they only recognize one King in the North (a Stark) — that little girl, Lyanna, (in the TV show) is a Mormont and is Jorah’s cousin replying for the House that Jorah used to be the head of.

protoculture hoarding, devil fruit eating, chilling in a house of leaves. Catch me @biglob or Jenius.blog

Randyll Tarly? Let’s Get to Know Sam’s Dad in Game of Thrones

Game of Thrones episode “Kill the Boy” we got a brief scene with Stannis and Sam where Stannis mentioned Sam’s father, Randyll Tarly, and I thought it might be worthwhile to talk about him a bit beyond that we know he sent his son and one time heir to the Wall, in favor of his second son, Dickon, who hasn’t slayed any walkers.

protoculture hoarding, devil fruit eating, chilling in a house of leaves. Catch me @biglob or Jenius.blog

7 Things About Game of Thrones’ House Baratheon and the Stormlands

As a lot of people read my Ten Things about Dorne and House Martell and a similar post about House Stark and House Targaryen so I thought it might be worthwhile to actually gives some love to the actual ruling family of Westeros, The Baratheons. For the HBO tv watchers, I wanted to get to House Baratheon because while we get Stannis all of the time, I think we sometimes forget that the actual King of Westeros is a technically (or not technically) a Baratheon. They are the royal house, not the Lannisters even though most of the Baratheon bannerman, including their seat of power in the Stormlands is not loyal to the current crown. They also had very close ties to the Targaryens almost from jump and maintained them almost throughout their history leading up to Robert’s Rebellion.

protoculture hoarding, devil fruit eating, chilling in a house of leaves. Catch me @biglob or Jenius.blog

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game of thrones

A Bold Life Amidst A Game of Thrones – Ser Barristan Selmy 

If you watched last Sunday’s episode of HBO’s Game of Thrones you know that the realm lost a good one in Barristan the Bold. For such a knight of accomplishment to die outside of Westeros may not seem right, but one would think he did so at the service of a ruler he respected, and that’s all he ever wanted. I thought it would be appropriate to look back at the life of a character that for TV watchers was a few years old, but for book readers we’ve been reading Selmy for almost TWENTY years. If you want, you can go check out my review of The Sons of the Harpy where Barristan, along with Greyworm, kicked a lot of ass. I think what tv watchers of Game of Thrones should know is that this hasn’t happened in the books, so this was not only an end to a major character, it was a shocking one to book readers.

protoculture hoarding, devil fruit eating, chilling in a house of leaves. Catch me @biglob or Jenius.blog

All the Smiles Died in Sons of the Harpy – Game of Thrones

The Sons of the Harpy immediately bring us back to Jorah and Tyrion to give us a taste of last week’s cliffhanger, almost a promise that they won’t leave it alone like they have some threads for an episode or two like with Dorne or Dany.

The isle Jaime points out is Tarth, where Brienne is from. We learn he’s pretty salty about the death of his father, obviously he feels a bit guilty because it would not have happened if it were not for him.

protoculture hoarding, devil fruit eating, chilling in a house of leaves. Catch me @biglob or Jenius.blog

Ten Things About House Targaryen for Game of Thrones Fans

Back to Game of Thrones as a lot of people read my Ten Things about Dorne and House Martell and a similar post about House Stark so I thought it might be worthwhile to go back to Westeros and do something similar around for the HBO watchers. I’ve been reading George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire since the mid-90s but these are spoiler free and does not detail anything anyone who is even a passive reader doesn’t know. Just some added information or historical footnotes that may or probably won’t enrich the Game of Thrones experience.

protoculture hoarding, devil fruit eating, chilling in a house of leaves. Catch me @biglob or Jenius.blog

The North Remembers in High Sparrow – Game of Thrones Review

Time to recap “High Sparrow”, tonight’s episode of HBO’s Game of Thrones. It was a really good one and a lot happens, and throughout it all I could think of was mentors. Teachers. I think we all see the ramifications of what occurs when someone like Tywin Lannister dies. Alliances don’t seem as lucrative or trusted, and enemies become braver.

protoculture hoarding, devil fruit eating, chilling in a house of leaves. Catch me @biglob or Jenius.blog

10 Things About House Martell and Dorne in HBO’s Game of Thrones

A new episode of Game of Thrones is coming at us Sunday but we were briefly introduced to Dorne last week. Dorne’s a bit of a new flavor from what we have seen of Westeros thus far, something that I guess was evident when we saw Prince Oberyn arrive at King’s Landing being all kinds of awesome. Nothing below is anything even the most passive book reader does not know, nor is it something that will spoil anything for TV watchers (with perhaps the caveat that you are already aware of the Sand Snakes) but if you are exceptionally easy to offend because internet, please stop reading.

protoculture hoarding, devil fruit eating, chilling in a house of leaves. Catch me @biglob or Jenius.blog

Ten Things About House Stark of Game of Thrones

Back to some Game of Thrones . A lot of people read my 10 Things about Dorne and House Martell so I thought it might be worthwhile to go back to Westeros and do something similar around hump day between episode reviews for the HBO tv watchers. I’ve been reading George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire since the mid-’90s but like with the previous one I’m not listing anything that isn’t pretty spoiler free and not anything anyone who is even the most passive of readers doesn’t already know. So no minds blown, just information that may but probably won’t enrich the Game of Thrones watching experience.

protoculture hoarding, devil fruit eating, chilling in a house of leaves. Catch me @biglob or Jenius.blog

Enter The House of Black and White – Game of Thrones Review

I think we ended the Game of Thrones season premiere mostly wondering where Arya was, so it feels really appropriate that episode 2, The House of Black and White, begins with Maisie Williams in kind of a brave new world moment. Arya, the smallest of our main cast staring at the giant Titan of Braavos statue that guards the entrance of Braavos. Little person, about to do big things. Beyond being excited to see Arya again, I think this simple scene also gave me this feeling that wherever we are going is formidable. Fans should remember and file away that the Iron Bank we hear about periodically in the show is the Iron Bank of Braavos and their saying is “the Iron Bank will have it’s due”. The titular house has a split black and white door — made of ebony and weirwood — Arya knocks on the white, black opens.

protoculture hoarding, devil fruit eating, chilling in a house of leaves. Catch me @biglob or Jenius.blog

The NEW Faces of VALIANT that May Be in Sony Movies

I want to start with comics in the current VALIANT universe. The 2012 relaunch.

I first want to make a basic statement for the possible uninitiated. All of the older comics, the pre-2012 output, has nothing to do with the current VALIANT comics, with the sole exception of (I think) the Christopher Priest & Mark Bright Q2: The Return of Quantum & Woody. We are in a totally different universe, none of those stories happened or are continued. The names are the same, a lot of the designs are still there, and while the current VALIANT owners do own all of those properties and material — minus those involving the three licensed characters from Gold Key, Magnus, Solar, and Turok, which no iteration of VALIANT ever owned — this universe started completely fresh in 2012.

protoculture hoarding, devil fruit eating, chilling in a house of leaves. Catch me @biglob or Jenius.blog

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game of thrones

Enter Sansa Fierce – GRRM Drops Winds of Winter Chapter

George R.R. Martin dropped another excerpt/sample chapter from The Winds of Winter today and I just wanted to jot down some thoughts on the Alayne/Sansa POV, as we go back to the Eyrie and see what Petyr has brewing, as the Vale has for the most part been lounging during The War of the Five Kings. Reaction to this sample chapter seems to be a bit divisive among fandom so I wanted to dive in and see where I ended up on the spectrum.

protoculture hoarding, devil fruit eating, chilling in a house of leaves. Catch me @biglob or Jenius.blog

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Which Occurs in the Wake of What has Gone Before – Sandman Meditations

Sometimes, the English language plays along. A god-like king of dreams has died, and so there is a wake. Dreams, in the literal sense at least, die upon the dreamer’s waking, and so, too, in The Sandman when Morpheus is no more: the dreamers wake.

There is a sense of quiet throughout this chapter, a quietude. And more so: gravity. Not for lack of words; there are plenty of words throughout these pages. Instead, the quiet, grave, pensive sorrow filling each panel seeps from the pencil lines and muted hues, the scored shadows along most of the edges, and all the downcast eyes. Though the chapter is not rich with plot, it gives an inescapable sense of motion, an undercurrent — the characters are all drawn toward the last page, the last panel. It’s the greatest, grandest view of the Endless we’ve yet seen, but also in many ways the coldest, for they look like stone monuments against a slate sky. “They are the family,” a character says.

Matthew Cheney has published fiction and nonfiction in a variety of venues, including One Story, Weird Tales, Locus, Rain Taxi, Lady Churchill’s Rosebud Wristlet, and elsewhere. A collection, Blood: Stories will be published by Black Lawrence Press in January 2016. He is the former series editor for the Best American Fantasy anthologies and currently a co-editor of the occasional online magazine The Revelator. His blog, The Mumpsimus, was nominated for a World Fantasy Award in 2005. He is working toward a Ph.D. in Literature at the University of New Hampshire, where his research focuses on the work of Virginia Woolf, J.M. Coetzee, and Samuel R. Delany.

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robotech

A Little Harmony for Robotech Movie Gold on the Sony Silver Screen

I’m half Japanese. I’m an american. I’ve lived in Japan for a lot of my earlier childhood and 1/4 of my life. I have land there. I knew ramen was life since the ’80s, and not cheap college student menu before U.S. hipsters of the past several years did. I even rocked a bento strong in elementary school, some of which were Macross branded. I was introduced to Macross through Robotech though, as I suspect most people in the U.S. were, but in my years in Japan, I’ve never come across anyone (the count is officially zero) who seem to care more about how Robotech came into being as I have in english speaking message boards in the 21st century. They have theirs, we have ours. As a child of both worlds it was never really a conflict, so it’s always puzzled me why it’s a point of actual active contention for anyone. Especially people who have to be grown to even know what either of these franchises are or were. If you look at any news related topics involving Robotech and Harmony Gold it is almost impossible not to go three reactions down until finding an, again, oddly American, Macross flag waving rebuttal to your enthusiasm. It’s not even a remotely personal subject. How can it be?

protoculture hoarding, devil fruit eating, chilling in a house of leaves. Catch me @biglob or Jenius.blog

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game of thrones

Darkstar of Dorne – Reconsidering Gerold Dayne in the Game of Thrones

This is an “article” I wrote a few years ago (so please keep in mind any new HBO or GRRM based revelations weren’t at my disposal) that made rounds on Tumblr after I wrote it on a now defunct Tumblr I had. Beyond simply wanting to keep it from disappearing from the web, I actually wanted to read it again after running into a more recent and very fly theory regarding Darkstar’s (Gerold Dayne) possible father over at Elio’s board dedicated to George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire. For those who only experience what you call Game of Thrones via HBO, this covers a thus far minor character you probably won’t meet until season 5 who debuted in book 4, A Feast for Crows, if at all. I cleaned it up a bit just to remove references to other material that was on my old blog that wouldn’t make sense now. I’d add that since the time that I wrote this it is more than likely the dedicated truth finders of the series have unearthed numerous theories that completely discount what in comparison is a childish half-thought on my part about Darkstar. They are exceedingly good at that and have been for more than a decade.

protoculture hoarding, devil fruit eating, chilling in a house of leaves. Catch me @biglob or Jenius.blog

Bringing it On | a Jessica Bendinger Interview

A couple weeks ago I had the pleasure of speaking with Jessica Bendinger, screen writer, director, and now author.  Her best-known work, at least in my age demographic, is writing Bring It On.  Jessica also wrote and directed Stick It, with Missy Peregrim and Jeff Bridges, and last December she published her first novel with Simon & Schuster, titled The Seven Rays.  It’s a young adult caper into karma and destiny and love and teenage hilarity, and I got the scoop on her inspirations, intentions, and more in our conversation…which you can read below!

Elena Nola is the imperial movie critic and the colder half of the Ladies of Ice and Fire.

The Evolution of the Serial Killer

America has always been crazy about serial killers.

They’re our homegrown werewolves. They click with the fast-food car culture that roars in the country’s busy, busy heart. They fit neatly with our cult-of-celebrity-style national mythology.

These beasts that seem like men, mowing through victims like McDonald’s cheeseburgers, speeding for the televised takedown by John Q. Law – how can the USA not be wild for them?

+Matthew Funk is a social media consultant, professional marketing copywriter and writing mentor. He is the editor of the Genre section of the critically acclaimed zine, FictionDaily and Full Stop. Winner of the Spinetingler award for Best Short Story on the Web 2010, M. C. Funk has been published at numerous sites online, indexed at his Web site, and in print with Needle Magazine, Howl, 6S and Crime Factory. He is represented by Stacia J. N. Decker of the Donald Maass Literary Agency.

Real = Angst – The Grim ‘N’ Gritty Trend Of The Non-Powered Superhero

Arrow, the WB action television series, starring Stephen Amell’s abs, based on the DC comic book series, Green Arrow, recently debuted and has now been picked up for a full season.

Honestly, I haven’t seen the show yet, and had little intention to do so after what I felt looked like a lacklustre trailer. However, it seems the show has become somewhat of a hit, and is getting pretty good buzz in the dark corners of the internet, which is no small feat, considering it’s based on a comic book, and seems vaguely embarrassed of that fact (case in point: it won’t call itself “Green Arrow,” as that is somehow more ridiculous), and comic book readers are not known for taking changes lying down, instead preferring an elaborate outraged-sitting position akin to extreme-yoga.

Liam José is the name given to a highly sophisticated system of
pullies and levers that edits and designs Crime Factory. Upgrades have
included a random text generator, the output of which has appeared in
places like A Twist of Noir, Powder Burn Flash, Flash Fiction
Offensive, and as one of the winning entries of the 2010 WGI at
Drowning Pool. It is serviced irregularly in Melbourne, Australia.

Cult Film Cult Crimes – Rob Zombie and THE LORDS OF SALEM

Somewhere on the fringe of mainstream film, there’s a frenzied community of artists who illustrate an elemental aspect of crime. They don’t bother with the ticky-tack trivia of the procedural. They don’t focus on the grand fables of revenge and wrongs righted.

+Matthew Funk is a social media consultant, professional marketing copywriter and writing mentor. He is the editor of the Genre section of the critically acclaimed zine, FictionDaily and Full Stop. Winner of the Spinetingler award for Best Short Story on the Web 2010, M. C. Funk has been published at numerous sites online, indexed at his Web site, and in print with Needle Magazine, Howl, 6S and Crime Factory. He is represented by Stacia J. N. Decker of the Donald Maass Literary Agency.

Strong Bonds – 007 from DR. NO to SKYFALL

British singer Adele has yet again proven herself to be a family friendly version of Amy Winehouse by recording a theme to a James Bond film, by (unlike the late Ms. Winehouse) actually getting the song recorded. And yeah, the song Skyfall (from the new James Bond film, the name of which I’m drawing a blank on…) sounds like the same kind of bland crap that normally gets made for these films. Just when I thought they’d maybe turned a corner with the Jack White-performed theme song from Quantum of Solace (perhaps the theme songs are inversely correlated with the quality of the films), which was so catchy that I could actually slap the meat curtains to it, as the common phrase goes.

Liam José is the name given to a highly sophisticated system of
pullies and levers that edits and designs Crime Factory. Upgrades have
included a random text generator, the output of which has appeared in
places like A Twist of Noir, Powder Burn Flash, Flash Fiction
Offensive, and as one of the winning entries of the 2010 WGI at
Drowning Pool. It is serviced irregularly in Melbourne, Australia.

Mae Catt – She Likes To Watch Monsters And Men

On the occasion of the Emmys’ passing, let’s take a step outside the spotlight. I want to lead you to the fringes for a moment.

You need to meet an artist who has yet to hold a gold statue aloft on a high-profile red carpet, but who is brilliant enough to be seen in the shadows all the same.

You need to meet Mae Catt.

+Matthew Funk is a social media consultant, professional marketing copywriter and writing mentor. He is the editor of the Genre section of the critically acclaimed zine, FictionDaily and Full Stop. Winner of the Spinetingler award for Best Short Story on the Web 2010, M. C. Funk has been published at numerous sites online, indexed at his Web site, and in print with Needle Magazine, Howl, 6S and Crime Factory. He is represented by Stacia J. N. Decker of the Donald Maass Literary Agency.

Boozed Up And Beaten Down: Noir, Realism, And Alcohol

Booze and crime goes hand in hand like booze and being hugely attractive and winning in life. I am drinking while writing this, because something something simpatico and shit. After speaking with my editor about the topic of this week’s column, I was told “Liam, you’re a pathetic drunk, either clean up your act, or write about it!”

And here we are.

Liam José is the name given to a highly sophisticated system of
pullies and levers that edits and designs Crime Factory. Upgrades have
included a random text generator, the output of which has appeared in
places like A Twist of Noir, Powder Burn Flash, Flash Fiction
Offensive, and as one of the winning entries of the 2010 WGI at
Drowning Pool. It is serviced irregularly in Melbourne, Australia.

Victimless Emmys – Crime TV In 2012

The thing one must always keep in mind with industry awards is, aside from a marketing perspective, they mean exactly nothing.  Less than that, even.  If a show I particularly enjoy can move a few more DVD sets on the after-market by slapping an “Emmy winner!” sticker on it, or if that little gold statuette helps convince the suits upstairs that said show should be renewed for another few seasons, then that’s just hunky-dory.  But if the Academy of Television Arts(?) and Sciences(!) doesn’t see fit to acknowledge certain shows or actors for their fine work, that certainly should be no skin off anyone’s nose.  The Emmys are like whipped cream: Great as a nice topping, but if you eat them right out of the can, you’re likely to get a stomach ache.

+Jimmy Callaway rules over Criminal Complex with an iron fist in a Playtex glove. He lives in San Diego, California.

The Innocence Of Morons – Sam Bacile & Cranked-Out Propaganda

If you find yourself with fifteen minutes to kill this evening, you can go to YouTube and pull up the video that is currently causing murder and mayhem and destruction in the Middle East this evening.  No, it isn’t Gangnam Style.  It’s that strange new cinematic sensation, Innocence of Muslims.

+Josh Converse work has appeared in Crime Factory, Plots with Guns, Black Heart Magazine, Out Of the Gutter, and A Twist of Noir. He is the only person to have ever simultaneously held the WBO and WBC middleweight and welterweight titles without any witnesses. Josh can talk his way out of any situation, particularly when on the cusp of runaway success. In 2010, he was the recipient of Nick Tosches’ final apology. He lives and works and eats cereal in Chicago.

To Ride Or Not To Ride – SAMCRO & Formulas For The Perfect Crime Story

Much like most of the civilized world, I knew what yesterday meant:

The premiere of Sons of Anarchy, Season 5. I was pretty jazzed. I would DVR that bad bastard and catch it when convenience struck. Or, if I was too lazy or forgetful to do that, I could snag it On Demand. I wasn’t sweating.

+Matthew Funk is a social media consultant, professional marketing copywriter and writing mentor. He is the editor of the Genre section of the critically acclaimed zine, FictionDaily and Full Stop. Winner of the Spinetingler award for Best Short Story on the Web 2010, M. C. Funk has been published at numerous sites online, indexed at his Web site, and in print with Needle Magazine, Howl, 6S and Crime Factory. He is represented by Stacia J. N. Decker of the Donald Maass Literary Agency.

The Pigs That Are Their Food – THE KING OF PIGS And BLEAK NIGHT

The Korean Film Festival in Australia (or KOFFIA, the acronym they’ve mercifully given me so that I don’t have to type out “The Korean Film Festival in Australia” too many times. I am not paid by the word, which is clearly why I’m so concise with any tangents and diversions within my pieces, and only stick to the most pertinent of assertations and never crowd the parentheses) has played its second year in Melbourne, and, as I can often be found yelling to people on the train, Korea currently has some of the most exciting filmmaking in the world. On top of the generally excellent pedigree, they’ve also been making what I would say is some of the most innovative and uncompromising crime films since America was doin’ it right back in the ‘70s.

Liam José is the name given to a highly sophisticated system of
pullies and levers that edits and designs Crime Factory. Upgrades have
included a random text generator, the output of which has appeared in
places like A Twist of Noir, Powder Burn Flash, Flash Fiction
Offensive, and as one of the winning entries of the 2010 WGI at
Drowning Pool. It is serviced irregularly in Melbourne, Australia.

My Name Is Markham – The TV Sensibilities of NEAR DEATH

Near Death is one of the spate of high-quality comic books Image has been cranking out over the past couple of years, and I finally did myself the favor of reading it.  Of course, now it appears the series has gone on hiatus just as I am getting on board (sad trombone).  Fingers crossed that it starts up again and soon, but in the meantime, Near Death is a nice little jumping-off point for talking about comics for comics’ sake.

+Jimmy Callaway rules over Criminal Complex with an iron fist in a Playtex glove. He lives in San Diego, California.

How My Load Got Shot | By Jedidiah Ayres

I just read a review of the film F*ckload of Scotch Tape that ended with this paragraph:

“In the end, F*ckload of Scotch Tape is the cinematic equivalent of a repeated kick to the nuts with just enough of a break here and there to give you some hope that maybe, just maybe, the next kick won’t come. But that next kick always comes, and it’s not going to stop. This is not an easy flick to experience, and I don’t know if the word ‘enjoy’ is the right one to use, even though I can’t dismiss the merits of the film even if it made me feel like shit. Stinky, watery shit. Fuck, you’re going to kick me in the nuts again, aren’t you?”

Author of Peckerwood, Fierce Bitches and A F*ckload of Shorts. Co-editor of the fiction anthologies Noir at the Bar and D*CKED.

The City Of I Will – Why BOSS Is Kelsey Grammer’s Greatest Work

It’s strange when you consider that Boss is Kelsey Grammer’s first major dramatic role.  He has always been known for playing upright, no-nonsense roles, but for laughs.  Boss season 2, which premiered this past Friday on Starz, is definitely no laughing matter, and regardless of how lauded Grammer has been for his comedy work, the role of Chicago mayor Tom Kane will be what he is remembered for, if there is any justice in the world.

Then again, a major theme of Boss so far is that there is no justice in the world.  So there’s that.

+Jimmy Callaway rules over Criminal Complex with an iron fist in a Playtex glove. He lives in San Diego, California.

Thawing Mr. Freeze – The Life And Death And Life Of Schwarzenegger’s Career

The implications of resurrecting Arnold Schwarzenegger.

For the record, I voted for Gallagher.

In the Second Great American Mindfuck of the early 21st Century, also known as the 2003 California Gubernatorial Recall Election, I was one of 5,466 watermelon-hating voters who chose to throw away their vote on comedian Gallagher rather than the action star Schwarzenegger, security guard Gary Coleman, porn merchant Larry Flynt, porn star Mary Carey, sumo wrestler Kurt “Tachikaze” Rightmyer, or any of the other names on the packed page of, er, uniquely qualified candidates provided at polling places across the Golden State.

+Josh Converse work has appeared in Crime Factory, Plots with Guns, Black Heart Magazine, Out Of the Gutter, and A Twist of Noir. He is the only person to have ever simultaneously held the WBO and WBC middleweight and welterweight titles without any witnesses. Josh can talk his way out of any situation, particularly when on the cusp of runaway success. In 2010, he was the recipient of Nick Tosches’ final apology. He lives and works and eats cereal in Chicago.

“Ya Wouldn’t Bloody Like Me When I’m Angry, Mate” – Eric Bana’s Weird Career Progression

Australian of many hats (and presumably berets, gloves, scarves and other assorted fineries) Eric Bana, is close to signing on to star in Lone Survivor. The Peter Berg-directed flick based on the events of SEAL Team 10’s “Operation Red Wing,”  where the Navy SEALs were ambushed while on a covert assassination mission in Afghanistan in 2005. Bana is to round out a cast that already includes Marky Mark (Wahlberg), Ben Foster, Emile Hirsch, and Taylor Kitsch in the role of “Taylor Kitsch is acting.” Peter Berg will also be handling the screenplay duties on this one, adapting the book of the same name that was penned by Marcus Luttrell. Complex – and my pants’ – favourite, Mark Wahlberg is set to play Luttrell, the member of the expedition who wrote the book about his experiences upon which Lone Survivor is based. No telling at this stage who the ‘lone survivor’ of the title is going to be.

Liam José is the name given to a highly sophisticated system of
pullies and levers that edits and designs Crime Factory. Upgrades have
included a random text generator, the output of which has appeared in
places like A Twist of Noir, Powder Burn Flash, Flash Fiction
Offensive, and as one of the winning entries of the 2010 WGI at
Drowning Pool. It is serviced irregularly in Melbourne, Australia.

Get A Haircut Robert Pattinson – COSMOPOLIS

Well, kids, it’s almost here.  The wide release on August 17th of Robert Pattinson’s latest vehicle, the David Cronenberg film Cosmopolis, is only days away, and if you listen closely, you can hear the eager squeals of anticipation from Bobby’s legions of fans.  And now there have been brand-new stills released from the film, which we bring to you today courtesy of The Playlist.  It never quite fails to fascinate just how these guys, these screen idols, continue to elicit such rabid devotion from so many.  It’s not that I don’t understand or anything; after all, I’ve nursed quite a few celebrity crushes over the years and still do.  And as we’ve discussed here before, Pattinson’s presence in this film will lead many to the works of his director and co-stars, many who may not have shown any interest in such otherwise.

+Jimmy Callaway rules over Criminal Complex with an iron fist in a Playtex glove. He lives in San Diego, California.

Handicapping VEGAS – Taking Bets On CBS’ 1960’s Sin City Drama

If your name is Michael Chiklis, you may not want to read this.
I’ve taken a liking to dropping giant, elephantine shits on upcoming network television premieres, particularly the high-gloss product.  I love doing it, because so much of the upper-echelon drama series fall into the Complex Realm of spent shell casings, nitrate tests, clipped dialogue, and squinty glares, and I’m kind of protective of all that stuff?

+Josh Converse work has appeared in Crime Factory, Plots with Guns, Black Heart Magazine, Out Of the Gutter, and A Twist of Noir. He is the only person to have ever simultaneously held the WBO and WBC middleweight and welterweight titles without any witnesses. Josh can talk his way out of any situation, particularly when on the cusp of runaway success. In 2010, he was the recipient of Nick Tosches’ final apology. He lives and works and eats cereal in Chicago.

What Are The Odds These Crime Film Remakes Will Happen?

Well, it’s a day ending in “y,” which means it’s time for Criminal Complex’s resident “typical internet fucktard” to vigorously blow his horn every which way over your face about film remakes. Film announcements are a lot like possums – cute to look at, but likely to disappear up your arse before anything more comes to fruition [A common Australian expression – Ed].

Liam José is the name given to a highly sophisticated system of
pullies and levers that edits and designs Crime Factory. Upgrades have
included a random text generator, the output of which has appeared in
places like A Twist of Noir, Powder Burn Flash, Flash Fiction
Offensive, and as one of the winning entries of the 2010 WGI at
Drowning Pool. It is serviced irregularly in Melbourne, Australia.

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The Kindly Ones: Part 13 – Sandman Meditations

The King is dead. Long live the King.

Those sentences have been rattling around in my mind’s ears ever since I finished reading the thirteenth, and final, chapter of The Kindly Ones. They’re traditionally said at ceremonies of monarchical accession, but mostly they remind me of E.M. Forster’s distinction between a story and a plot. In Aspects of the Novel, Forster maintained that “The king died, and then the queen died” is a story, while “The king died, and then the queen died of grief” is a plot. A story is a narrative of events; a plot is a narrative with causality.

Matthew Cheney has published fiction and nonfiction in a variety of venues, including One Story, Weird Tales, Locus, Rain Taxi, Lady Churchill’s Rosebud Wristlet, and elsewhere. A collection, Blood: Stories will be published by Black Lawrence Press in January 2016. He is the former series editor for the Best American Fantasy anthologies and currently a co-editor of the occasional online magazine The Revelator. His blog, The Mumpsimus, was nominated for a World Fantasy Award in 2005. He is working toward a Ph.D. in Literature at the University of New Hampshire, where his research focuses on the work of Virginia Woolf, J.M. Coetzee, and Samuel R. Delany.

12 Messed-Up Memorial Day HATFIELDS & MCCOYS Premiere Facts

No other folk do blood feuds like Mason-Dixon Line Americans. Wedged between the Smoky Mountains and the Mississippi is enough pure meanness to power New York City from now until the Mayan Doomsday. They may pronounce themselves zealots for the religion of “turn the other cheek,” but hillbillies make Sicilian mobsters look laid back.

+Matthew Funk is a social media consultant, professional marketing copywriter and writing mentor. He is the editor of the Genre section of the critically acclaimed zine, FictionDaily and Full Stop. Winner of the Spinetingler award for Best Short Story on the Web 2010, M. C. Funk has been published at numerous sites online, indexed at his Web site, and in print with Needle Magazine, Howl, 6S and Crime Factory. He is represented by Stacia J. N. Decker of the Donald Maass Literary Agency.