Tuesday, March 31, 2009
Secret Saturdays DVD
Volume One of the Secret Saturdays DVD collection is coming this summer, featuring the first 5 episodes, and tons of bonus features, including early development artwork and rough animatics.
If you haven't jumped onboard the Secret Saturdays train yet (and really, what's wrong with you if you haven't?), this will be an excellent opportunity to catch up. And don't forget, there's a Secret Saturdays marathon planned for April 5th, if you don't want to wait for the DVD, and new episodes start airing on April 10th.
Georgia will be pleased, since she's been asking for new episodes for a while, though admittedly she's been perfectly content the last few months to watch "Guess Who's Going to be Dinner" and "The Swarm at the Edge of Space" over and over and over again... Why those two episodes in particular I'll never know, except for the fact that they air paired on our Tivo (with the "coming next" spot at the end of the recording pointing to the next episode that aired live) with the two episodes of Batman: The Brave & The Bold that she watches again and again, for reasons of her own. (If you're curious her two favorites are "Invasion of the Secret Santas!", which she calls "the Red Tornado and Santa one," and "Journey to the Center of the Bat," which Georgia calls "the one where Aquaman and Atom get really small and go inside of Batman"--for obvious reasons.)
Re\Visioned: Activision - Kaboom
Monday, March 30, 2009
Total Sci-Fi on End of the Century
With strong supporting characters and a brilliantly constructed conspiracy, the clues, twists and gruesome action ensure that there’s little brain rest between the covers. To tell too much about the plot would ruin its considerable surprises, but suffice to say that if this is your first experience of Roberson, I guarantee it won’t be the last.
Challenging the stability of the often-thin line between fantasy and sci-fi, End of the Century is a unique experience that latches on from the first page and doesn’t let go.
- Alison Bechdel's comic-strip review of Jane Vandenburgh's memoir A Pocket History of Sex in the Twentieth Century.
- Can fractals make sense of the quantum world, and can a fractal represent the "invariant set of the universe," otherwise known as the Multiverse?
- Lavie Tidhar writes to say that he's started the World SF News Blog, in part to promote the forthcoming Apex Book of World SF. Looks well worth checking out.
Friday, March 27, 2009
Bookgasm on End of the Century
Roberson’s imagination is in full force, and the results are magical, although a tad too epic. He deserves praise for being able to keep each section true to its genre without having the novel feel schizophrenic. He tells three separate stories so winningly that you won’t care — for the most part, at least — that they have yet to merge.As usual, I feel like END OF THE CENTURY veers toward seeming endless as the third act progresses, but that’s a problem with many books (and movies, and it should be noted that I’d love to see one made from this). Roberson is an underrated name in the field of fantasy and science fiction; this effort was no easy undertaking, but it’s ingenious and spirited, and he pulls through with his head held high.
Thursday, March 26, 2009
What time is it?
The new Cartoon Network series, first announced last year, continues the adventures of Finn and Jake, which as I've raved before is arguably the best thing in the history of ever.
- All hail Pádraig Ó Méalóid! He's managed to get his hands on a xerox of the complete unpublished Big Numbers #3, and even gotten Alan Moore's permission to post the whole thing online.
- Subterranean has posted the first two chapters of Kage Baker's forthcoming The Women of Nell Gwynne’s, about an establishment that is not simply "the finest and most exclusive brothel in Whitehall," but "is in fact the sister organization to the Gentlemen’s Speculative Society, that 19th-century predecessor to a certain Company..."
- Project Rooftop has posted the winning entries in their Batman 2.0 competition, featuring fan redesigns of a proposed Dick Grayson Batman. (If you're new to Project Rooftop, check out their previous competitions on Superman, Iron Man, Rocketeer, Vampirella, and Wonder Woman.)
Wednesday, March 25, 2009
Well, MTV's Splash Page has posted a clip. Behold!
Looks pretty good, y'all.
Tuesday, March 24, 2009
Kill Bill Parts 1 & 2, in One Minute, in One Take
Creebobby Comics Archetype Times Table, Addendum
See, Dave, there's your monkeys. Happy now?
Thursday, March 19, 2009
New Tom Strong?
I've recently reread all of Alan Moore's Tom Strong and the related series (Terrific Tales, the Tesla oneshot, and the various and sundry bits and pieces in the different ABC one-shots and specials). And while it may lack the technical brilliance of some of his other work, I'm now leaning towards the conclusion that Tom Strong may be my favorite of Moore's comics. It's the most fun, at leastd.
Superhero Tom Strong, created by Alan Moore, will return to the WildStorm imprint in 2009 in a miniseries by Peter Hogan and Chris Sprouse.
Hank Kanalz, general manager of WildStorm Productions, said the new series will be called “Tom Strong and the Robots of Doom.”
“With Chris on ‘Tom Strong,’ this will make a terrific miniseries, and it will come out on time,” Kanalz said.
Tom Strong was created by Moore and Sprouse and first appeared in “Tom Strong” #1 from America’s Best Comics, an imprint of WildStorm, in 1999.
Peter Hogan was responsible for the two splendid Terra Obscura miniseries, as well as The Many Worlds of Tesla Strong, which stands nicely alongside the Moore-scripted stories of the Strong Family. And with Chris Sprouse handling the art duties? Sign me up!
(I note with amusement that this marks yet another "So-and-So and the Something of Doom" titles that have cropped up recently.)
Wednesday, March 18, 2009
The Adventures of Gabriel Hunt
Who is Gabriel Hunt? Well, here's the flack from the website:
The announced titles, all of them with Glen Orbik covers and apparently "cowritten" by Gabriel Hunt, will be from the keyboards of James Reasoner, Charles Ardai, Nicholas Kaufmann, Christa Faust, David J. Schow, and Raymond Benson, and are scheduled to come out in mmpb every few months starting May 2009.
From Charles Ardai, Edgar Award-winning author and creator of the acclaimed pulp mystery imprint HARD CASE CRIME comes a thrilling pulp adventure series in the tradition of H. Rider Haggard, Edgar Rice Burroughs, and the immortal Doc Savage.
Perennially popular at the movies—from the old black-and-white serials of the 1930s to their latter day descendants starring Harrison Ford—adventure fiction used to be just as popular at bookstores and newsstands. But in recent years, the old-fashioned tale of high adventure has almost entirely vanished from bookstore shelves.
And like any other lost treasure, it's going to take a great adventure hero to find it and bring it back.
Enter Gabriel Hunt, world traveler and man of action, a strapping six-footer with a classic six-shooter in a holster on his hip and an insatiable hunger for discovery. And just what does he discover? Lost cities...ancient artifacts...deadly peril and dastardly adversaries...all the stuff of classic adventure fiction, complete with horses, snakes, shovels, pickaxes, torches, traps, bottomless pits, barroom brawls, jungles, jewels, and just about everything else that’s ever made your heart beat faster.
I am very intrigued by this.
Being sick sucks, by the way.
Friday, March 13, 2009
Moore on Creative Uncertainty
This is from Moore's afterword to the 2003 reprint by Avatar Press of a long essay he'd written in 1985, "Alan Moore's Writing for Comics." It's worth hunting down a copy, as there's a lot of great stuff in there that has application to all creative endeavors, beyond the nuts-and-bolts advice on comic scripting.
"It is much more exciting and thus creatively energizing if you are attempting something where you are uncertain of its outcome, where you don't know if it will work or not. And this is only the beginning. Eventually, increasingly confident of your talents to make a workable story out of most anything, you will come to regard being merely unsure of a work's outcome as far too facile an approach. Instead, you may graduate to only attempting works which you privately suspect to be impossible. This is no bad thing, and if rigorously applied would weed out a great many dull and repetitive creators from the world while at the same time increasing the world's relatively meager cache of genuine unexpected marvels."
Thursday, March 12, 2009
Gervais and Elmo, Together at Last
Here's the introduction from the AP YouTube channel:
Add Ricky Gervais to the set of 'Sesame Street' and you come up with outrageous comedy. Check out outtakes from his interview with Muppet Elmo. The full episode airs this November when 'Street' opens with its 40th anniversary. (March 11)
Wednesday, March 11, 2009
Creebobby Comics Archetype Times Table
You'll want to embiggen this one.
The Evolution of Batman
Nicely done, no?
Tuesday, March 10, 2009
Kim Newman on PJF
Here are some things I got from PJ Farmer:
... that it's all right to make up stories about whatever you happen to be interested in—pulp heroes, zeppelins, weird sex, 19th century fringe history—and hope enough readers out there will either share your interests or come to them through the story.
... that it's not enough to just pastiche earlier works—if you borrow a character or a plot or a setting, you have to put a spin on it, engage with the original work in some critical, almost adversarial way.
... that you can use real people as viewpoint characters, and even be quite rude about them, so long as you inhabit them as much as fictional creations.
... there's no such thing as useless information. Everything you know can be used.
... science fiction characters can have sex lives. And senses of humour.
... what a Psyche knot is.
... you can tie all your books and stories and even non-fiction together without imposing any deadening consistency (Mike Moorcock and M. John Harrison reinforce this).
Monday, March 09, 2009
Angry Robot Books
The site lists four titles coming out in the first couple of months (August and September in the UK, September and October in the US and elsewhere). And this one in particular looks strangely familiar...
BOOK OF SECRETSMore info in the links above. This is shaping up to be a strong lineup, and I'm pleased to be a part of it.
Reporter Spencer Finch is embroiled in the hunt for a missing book, encountering along the way cat burglars and mobsters, hackers and monks. At the same time, he’s trying to make sense of the legacy left him by his late grandfather, a chest of what appear to be magazines from the golden age of pulp fiction, and even earlier.
Following his nose, Finch gradually uncovers a mystery involving a lost Greek play, secret societies, generations of masked vigilantes… and an entire secret history of mankind.
This tremendous modern fantasy is like The Da Vinci Code rewritten by the Coen Brothers. Already critically acclaimed worldwide for both his SF and fantasy series, Chris Roberson is at the very height of his powers. A lost classic, originally self-published by Chris as Voices of Thunder back in 2001, this revised, definitive edition, from the author’s preferred text, is published for the mass-market for the very first time.
- Mark Waid has some solid advice on finding the emotional core of a character.
- The BBC has posted Paul Cornell's audio adaptation of Iain Banks's The State of the Art.
- And speaking of Paul, listen to him and Alan Davis talk about Captain Britain on the Panel Borders podcast.
Saturday, March 07, 2009
For Digestion's Sake
I may be a smoking dilettante, spending more weeks of the year as a non-smoker than as a smoker, but I am a brand loyalist. Camels have always been my brand, and that was before I realized that they were the the explorer's secret weapon... against indigestion.
Frequently Asked Questions About Time Travel
Time-travelling geeks in a pub? Okay, count me in.
Friday, March 06, 2009
Philip Eddolls's "Git Gob"
Thursday, March 05, 2009
Saturday Morning Watchmen
Wednesday, March 04, 2009
It does mean that the projected third Celestial Empire novel from Solaris has fallen between the cracks, not yet under contract and too far out in the schedule to be addressed in the short term. So it may be a while yet before the world sees another Celestial Empire novel from me. But don't worry, world! I've got loads of other irons in the fire, and with any luck I'll have some good news for you in the next little while.
In any event, I want to thank the whole Solaris crew for a terrific few years. Nice work, gents!
Tuesday, March 03, 2009
- The first chapters of Tim Byrd's forthcoming Doc Wilde and the Frogs of Doom
- The first two chapters of Matt Sturges's forthcoming Midwinter
Monday, March 02, 2009
I've tried without success to track down the source of this one. Anyone know who might have done it?
Blue Fish Georgia
It took a little planning, and some last minute shopping over the weekend, but I think Allison did a terrific job of capturing the look. What do you think?
Dylan Horrocks launches Hicksville site
Horrocks hinted about this on his blog awhile back, so it doesn't come as a complete shock, but still. New Dylan Horrocks comics?!
Here's the announcement from the Hicksville site:
If you don't know who Dylan Horrocks is, shame on you. You might be excused because his work hasn't ever gotten the attention it deserves in the States, I think, but still, shame on you.
Well, it’s taken me a while, but I’m finally joining the wonderful world of online comics. Henceforth, this site will be my primary way of serialising long stories, replacing the old paper pamphlet format of PickleAtlas. I’m making the shift for a number of reasons - from my growing enthusiasm for the internet to the appeal of weekly deadlines - but for those who still love paper, never fear: everything will end up as book collections as well. and
So - I’m starting with two ongoing serials:
The American Dream: this is a totally new story that I’ve been working on for some years (I think I began writing notes for it in 2003 or 2004). Not sure exactly how long it will be, but probably less than 100 pages, and I plan on putting up a few new pages per week.
Sam Zabel & the Magic Pen: I already published the first chapter of this story in Atlas #2 & 3 (from the wonderful Drawn & Quarterly), so the first 26 pages will look pretty familiar to anyone who read them there. But I’ve now added colour (which I’d always hoped to do eventually), and of course from chapter two onwards, it’ll be all new.
Future serials will include Atlas (I’m in the process of reworking the opening section, complete with some new material), and various other things; I plan to have two serials running at any given time.
I’ll also be gradually adding short stories, some of which were drawn for recent anthologies, along with old stuff that’s hard to find. First up are Siso and The Physics Engine, both of which were drawn for anthologies of New Zealand writing.
As I’m kinda new to this webcomics thing, please forgive any early hiccups - and be aware that I’m still ironing out a few kinks in the coding, etc.
Ten years ago my first "professional" writing was doing comics reviews for a website run by Steve Jackson (of Steve Jackson Games fame). One of the first reviews I did was of Horrocks's Hicksville, which had serialized in the pages of Pickle and was by then available in a completed and collected edition from Black Eye. It was later reissued by Drawn & Quarterly, and while it's out of print, second hand copies can be had for reasonable rates.
Here's the review. Unless you hate goodness or something, you owe it to yourself to hunt down a copy of Hicksville, and to keep track of the new offerings on Hicksville Comics, as well!
- Nick Gevers interviews Lou Anders, mostly about Fast Forward 2 but also about sf and short fiction in general.
- Pyr Books is offering Sean Williams's The Crooked Letter as a free ebook. Check it out, already!
- Comic Book Resources has a preview of Jeff Parker's Agents of Atlas #2, which you need to own.
- Daryl Gregory has posted the first chapter of his forthcoming novel The Devil's Alphabet, due out in November. If you haven't read his Pandemonium yet, what the heck are you waiting for?