Episode 14 Show Notes

September 15th, 2009 by Kyle

Geek News Stories We Covered:

From Remake Corner:

Who We’re Following On Twitter (And So Should You):

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Godspeed, Dear Friend

September 14th, 2009 by Kyle

There may have been greater thespians, but few people on the screen who you’d just straight-out enjoy watching more.

You will be missed, dear friend. Godspeed on your new road – may the whiskey be sweet, the music swinging, and may pain never hurt there.

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Episode 14: Kyle’s Back, and He Hates Barbados!

September 14th, 2009 by Kyle


Categories: Episodes

The Mindless Desert of "Canaan"

September 12th, 2009 by Mike

Mike here,

I watch quite a lot of anime. Some of it is good, much of it is mediocre or bad; the 80/20 rule holds fast in Japan. But every once in a while you get that rare monstrosity – the show that has good plot, good situation, and really bad characters and/or writing. Such a show is Canaan.

How one can manage to take a show about terrorists, killer viruses, reporters, and superhuman mercenaries; a show ballsy enough to paint a scenario where terrorists attack the President of the United States on a visit to China with a bio-weapon; and yet make the main female characters act like they have undergone lobotomies and never graduated out of Kindergarten, is beyond me.

The show is taken from a Japanese game/video novel written for the Wii, one that is highly thought of for it’s content and intricate plot. And it is notable that the title character, Canaan, and her lobotomized, naive, clueless, permanent victim counterpart Maria Osawa do not appear in the game.

Bottom line, the only thing worse than watching a bad anime (even one that is a guilty pleasure) is getting hooked on a potentially good anime that time and again fills itself up with cliches, boring main characters, and sappy variations of the same scenes of simplistic Junior High thinking between supposedly capable adults.

Of course as I check out the entry on Wikipedia, I learn that one of the people in charge of the writing is Mari Okada writer of Vampire Knight, a vampire anime so bad it makes Twilight look like Nosferatu. Now everything falls into place.

Still, while I’m hooked enough on the plot to want to see it to the end of this, luckily, brief series (13 episodes), I want to give this public service to those who are free of it’s mindless clutches. Canaan should have been one of the best shows of the season, but it lets it’s viewers down hard. And there are rumors of 4 movies to follow. So do your brains a favor, avoid Canaan and you won’t find them leaking out of your ear from trying to resolve how 50% of the show is pure win and the other 50% is pure crap.

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To The Pedocave!

September 10th, 2009 by Kyle

Kyle here;

I could even maybe see having a room like this, if I were a pedo. I just could never, never see admitting to it.

Nananananananana pe-do… nananananananana pe-doooooooooooo!!

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Felicia Day Is Geek Love

September 9th, 2009 by Kyle

Kyle here;

So today on Twitter, I see:

@feliciaday Listening to Hardcore History podcast on the fall of Carthage while I shop for black high heels.

So let me get this straight – the wonderfully geeky, unbelievably pretty redhead, Apple fan, comedienne, writer, gamer, fanboy favorite Felicia Day was out doing the literate history nerd thing by listening to one of my favorite podcasts, while she shopped for sexy shoes?

Is this a plot?

Could I possibly love this woman any more?

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Not Exactly Scarface

September 7th, 2009 by Kyle

No, it’s not violence, drug use, and assault with a grenade launcher, but the upcoming CGI 3D Smurfs movie does promise to be a First-Degree rape of my childhood!

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Episode 13: M-A-R… V-E-L… M-O-U-S-E!

September 7th, 2009 by Kyle


Categories: Episodes

Dismarvel Photoshop Contest = Pure Win

September 6th, 2009 by Kyle

Normally I’d save a small blurb like this for the Twitter feed, but this Disney/Marvel crossover Photoshop contest was just too good not to plug.

My personal favorite:

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Are Comics Racist?

September 4th, 2009 by Kyle

Kyle here;

A couple of full disclosures before we start. I’m white, as are the other members of the Geek Tragedy Podcast roundtable. NPC Comics, however, which produces the podcast, is a black-owned business, with a black EIC, and a talent pool that is fantastically diverse.

io9 ran a story today on whether comics are institutionally racist. I’d like to share my own thoughts on the subject.

When I was an undergrad, I took a Black Literature course. It sucked. I hated it. But not because I didn’t find some great literature written by some great authors in it. For example, I found Charles Chestnutt, Booker T. Washington, and especially Zora Neale Hurston captivating. But mixed in with the good was a lot of bad. I came to realize that the problem with this course was that it wasn’t selecting authors based on how good they were, but on how black they were. Thus, some of the authors whose works were selected for inclusion in the course were good writers, and some were bad or even awful.

I came away with the impression that it really would be better if we just made a more conscious effort to include the best black authors in general American Literature courses. Having a course that features black authors that are there just for the sake of being black doesn’t make for pleasant reading experiences.

And so, I think, it is with comics.

It is important to remember that most of the really big, popular characters in comics were developed in a very different world. Superman dates to the 1930s, Batman and Wonder Woman to the early 1940s, Spider-Man and The Hulk to the early 1960s, and so on. To steal a line from a funny web video, “It was a different time, you understand”. There was not yet a lot of what one might call “diversity consciousness” out there yet.

But then in the late 1960s and into the early 1970s, that consciousness did develop. And quite suddenly.

And so, it appears to me, comics publishers looked at each other and said something to the effect of: “Quick! We have to put a couple black guys in our comics!”

And so they did. And what you ended up with was black characters that were not well-crafted, that did not have compelling personalities or back stories, and didn’t get the attention from the writers that they deserved. In other words, black characters that were there for the sake of being black.

Even their names told that story: Black Panther, Black Vulcan, Blackwing, Black Racer, Black Eagle, Black Lightning, Black Spider… their real purpose in life – to be conspicuously black – was not exactly a well-hidden secret.

And they sucked.

And people noticed, and the characters, for the most part, never really caught on.

All of which means that comics, and comic readers, are not necessarily racist. They just want from black characters the same things they want from any other character – a compelling personality, an interesting back story, and good storylines. John Stewart as Green Lantern, for example, or Al Simmons as Spawn, have been popular with fans for a long time, and continue to be, because they have all of those things.

Don’t give your audience black characters that are tacked on as an afterthought. Just create interesting characters involved in interesting stories, and make a more conscious effort to make some of them more diverse.

If you do, they’ll catch on. But don’t keep giving us Captain Planet-style diversity for diversity’s sake and expect it to go anywhere.

And yet, it must be said that this still does nothing for diversity amongst the biggest-name superheroes. Green Lantern is an exception – it’s expected that the ring will be passed from person to person. But you can’t really have a Spider-Man that’s not Peter Parker, and you can’t just go and make Peter Parker black (or Latino, or Asian, or anything else, for that matter). Same with Bruce Wayne, or Clark Kent, or Logan, or almost all of the most popular characters. They and their basic look were established long ago, and there’s basically very little you can do about that now. So yes, over time, some great black characters can be added to the comics universe. And should be. But it’s still likely to be lookin’ mighty white in the world of comics for a long time to come.

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