Saturday, August 31, 2013

Book Review: This is How You Die, edited by Ryan North, Matthew Bennardo, and David Malki!

Earlier this summer, I tripped up on the book Machine of Death, edited by Ryan North (of Dinosaur Comics), short fiction writer Matthew Bennardo, and David Malki! (of Wondermark). The book is a massive collection of short stories centered around the same premise: an invention that tells you how you will die. Suddenly, you get a bunch of different takes from a variety of authors on the topic, and there really isn't a bad one in the batch. For such a seemingly limiting topic, there's not too much overlap and there's lot of humor to go along with the darker, more serious stories.

I don't generally like short fiction as a rule, but this had a lot going for it - humor, interesting social commentary, and lots of death. Recently, the sequel, This is How You Die came out, and it's chock full of more death.

Thank GIF it's Friday

Not entirely convinced that racoons aren't jerks, but at least they apologise. 

Friday, August 30, 2013

Big Brother Power Rankings: Hitting the Home Stretch

Well, the hope last week would be for a lot of excitement in the House, and it didn't disappoint. We have a new eviction, a surprise new Head of Household, and a double eviction on the platter for next week, so let's get right down to it.

NOTE: There are spoilers for this week's Head of Household beyond the jump. If you want to refrain from being spoiled, check back Sunday!

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Thursday Threesome - Three movies that were upsettingly not what I thought

Through naivete or cheerful self-delusion I've managed to accidentally traumatize myself a few times, movie-wise. The following list probably explains why I only seem to watch superhero movies these days. No spider-aliens. No torture or sudden nasty surprises. No blind Icelandic singing ladies. 

I used to read a fairly edgy monthly magazine called Juice (anyone remember that?), who were fond of whole-decade retrospectives. As such they published a “Best 100 Films of The Decade” list, and I somewhat obsessively started trying to work my way through them. I was fifteen at the time, and the internet was still mostly for ICQ and Myspace, so I’d wander down the road to the video store with my checklist and watch whatever I could find. I watched a whole lot of things I wouldn't normally have attempted, and I watched everything alone because I was a bit wary about how my parents might feel about my taste in movies. This I experienced the unmitigated horror of Von Trier alone and unprepared. There is a lesson here, folks. Check out the rest of the list after the jump!!

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

DC Comics New 52 - Stryder's Weekly Top 5

A cool side effect of September being "Villain's Month" in the DCU is that all the comics released THIS month either finish off a storyline or end on a larger-than-usual cliffhanger!  Either way, it's an exciting month!

Today's comics were released on August 21, 2013 and were brought to you by the letter D & C and the number 52!

Batman and Robin #23 - "I may have to live with Damian's death, but I don't ever have to accept it."

This month we get "Acceptance", the final chapter of the 5-stages-of-grief arc that began after the brutal death of Damian "Robin" WayneNightwing returns to Gotham City to try and talk some sense into Bruce, who is obsessively trying to win in a virtual reenactment of the battle in which Damian died.  Batman wants to prove that he could have saved his son! 

This is just a really heartfelt and moving issue.  The moments shared between Bruce and his first Robin, Dick, and even more so with the whole family's surrogate father, Alfred Pennyworth are just incredible.  The issue really makes you feel for these characters and their loss.  Pretty crazy and really great for a comic book about a guy dressed like a Bat!

That said, I still hope that Damian is resurrected somehow...someday...

Join me after the JUMP for a look at another four pretty stellar comics!

The Book Was Better Podcast Episode 57 - Elektra (with guest host Brett!)

The Book Was Better is the podcast where we read, discuss and make fun of the (often) hastily written novelizations of (usually) terrible films!

This week we ninja-flip into Marvel's most maligned movie monstrosity by reading the junior novelization of the Daredevil spin-off that nobody wanted - Elektra! And helping me unravel all this convoluted nonsense is comic aficionado and friend of the show, Brett. This is the one Marvel film I had never seen, and not even resurrection, Terence Stamp, spontaneous combustion or cartoon snakes can rescue this one, friends!

You can download it right now on the official site!

Or why not subscribe to us on iTunes, like us on Facebook, or join the heady discussion on our Facebook group!

Monday, August 26, 2013

FPcast! The Fruitless Pursuits Podcast for August 26th! BATFLECK Edition!

This week we're mostly focused on the movies as we tackle the nerd-sensitive topic of Ben Affleck as our brand new Batman! We also discuss the casting news for Rocket Raccoon and the Scarlet Witch, in videogames we play the cash devouring Disney Infinity! And in collectibles Jacinta is heading to Singapore and tells you all about an exclusive heavy metal Batman!

Download here! (Click to stream, right-click to save)

The Madness That Was Gen Con 2013

If I could describe Gen Con 2013 in one word, it would be MADNESS.


A good madness though. Gen Con has released the numbers, and this is one of the biggest factors. Over 49,000 people attended this year, which makes it the largest year ever. 

The entire event is massive. Hotels are sold out for miles. Every parking lot in town is full. The lines for lunch are 30 minutes long. So why do we put ourselves through such insanity? The quick answer is that the games are fun and the people are great. You will hear this in every single recap of Gen Con and I can't stress it enough. If you want to meet people and test out a bunch of new games, you should start planning for Gen Con 2014 now (because the hotels are probably already selling out).

This year was tough for me. I had a lot of plans that were thwarted by terrible fitting new shoes (BIG MISTAKE) and limited time. But I still managed to see the awesomeness of the new releases and play some unreleased upcoming games. Click through the jump for the full recap.