Pop Culture Download: January 28, 2018

January 28, 2018


On the Docket
(In order of discovery this week)

Jessica Jones: Season Two is coming to Netflix on March 8. – [Deadline]

BEN Books acquires the publication rights to Snow, a crime/adventure series by Bobby Nash. – [BEN Books]

Michael Jan Friedman is trying to fund Empty Space, a new and mysterious space adventure. The Kickstarter campaign ends on February 16. – [Kickstarter]

Keith DeCandido continues 4-Color to 35-Millimeter: The Great Superhero Movie Rewatch with a look at Howard the Duck (1986) and Nick Fury: Agent of SHIELD (1998). – [Tor.com]

Michael French of RetroBlasting takes viewers on a tour of his impressive studio and archive. – [YouTube]

Every episode of Dark Shadows is available to stream on Amazon. – [Decider]

It’s only a year and a half old, but I finally saw Patrick Stewart singing country songs. You should too, then follow the trail to an actual sampler album. – [Billboard]

New York Times bestselling author David Mack will be taking part in his first Reddit Ask Me Anything (AMA) on February 1. This is celebrating the release of his new novel The Midnight Front, a World War II-era epic fantasy. The AMA will take place in the r/fantasy subreddit. – [Blog]

Naomi Parker Fraley, the inspiration for Rosie the Riveter, has died at age 96. – [CNN]

The 2018 Academy Award nominees have been announced. (I’m not sure if I’ll do another Oscars contest on The Weekly Podioplex.) – [Variety]

Neil Diamond is retiring from the concert tour circuit after being diagnosed with Parkinson’s. – [PIX11]

Elton John is retiring from the concert tour circuit after fifty years on the road. – [CNN]

The Shannara Chronicles has been canceled after two seasons. – [Variety]

Acclaimed fantasy author Ursula K. Le Guin has died at the age of 88. – [NYT]

Toys ‘R’ Us is closing over 180 stores worldwide. – [AJC]

The sixth Mission: Impossible film gets a title. – [Deadline]

Candice Bergen returns to television for a Murphy Brown revival series. – [Deadline]

Into The Chronic Rift

The Chronic Rift – 003: Some Things to Think About
John flies solo on this episode offering reviews from Dan Persons of Hour of the Wolf (movies – Mary and the Witch’s Flower), Keith R.A. DeCandido (TV – Major Crimes) and himself (podcasts – Flip Florey’s Super Saturday Board Game Serial). 

The Batcave Podcast: Episode 81 – “Will the Real Robin Please Stand Up?” & “He Who Takes the Ice, Gets the Cooler”
Catwoman finds a ringer for Robin and manages to get him to replace the real deal. But Batman doesn’t appear to be buying it. Can it proves his suspicions before this ringer can reveal Batman’s identity to Catwoman? Plus, Mr. Freeze kidnaps a maharaja, right under the noses of the GCPD and Batman and Robin. Can they rescue him before he is frozen and tossed into Gotham Harbor?

Generations Geek Episode 45 – The A2s Always Were a Bit Twitchy
Science fiction writer Scott Pearson and his daughter, Ella, dive into Aliens (1986) for part three of their epic review of the entire Alien movie series. Remember, always listen to Ripley!

The Weekly Podioplex: January 23, 2018


The Watchlist

Star Trek: Discovery
The Good Doctor
The Flash
Black Lightning
The Good Place
Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD

Waiting room
MacGyver (returns February 2)
Legends of Tomorrow
 (returns February 12)
Star Wars Rebels
(returns February 19)
Designated Survivor (returns February 28)
Timeless (Season Two premieres March 11)
The 100 (Season Five premieres April 24)
The Orville (Season Two premieres Fall 2018)
Doctor Who (Series Eleven premieres Fall 2018)
Game of Thrones (Season Eight premieres 2019)

Catching up
Taken – via Netflix

Marvel’s Inhumans – Episodes 5-8


Movie Night

This week

Feb 16 – Black Panther – (Marvel Cinematic Universe Phase III, Chapter 6)
Mar 9 – A Wrinkle in Time
May 4 – Avengers: Infinity War – (Marvel Cinematic Universe Phase III, Chapter 7)
May 11 – Life of the Party – (A close friend of mine was an extra with significant camera time on this project)
May 18 – Deadpool 2 – (X-Men series #11)
May 25 – Solo: A Star Wars Story
Jun 15 – The Incredibles 2
Jun 22 – Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom
Jul 6 – Ant-Man and the Wasp – (Marvel Cinematic Universe Phase III, Chapter 8)
Jul 27 – Mission: Impossible — Fallout – (M:I #6)
Oct 5 – Venom – (Sony Spider-Man Universe revival)
Nov 2 – X-Men: Dark Phoenix – (X-Men series #12)
Nov 2 – Mulan – (Disney live-action remake)
Nov 16 – Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald – (Fantastic Beasts #2, Harry Potter #10)
Nov 21 – Ralph Breaks the Internet: Wreck-It Ralph 2 – 11/21
Dec 14 – Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse – (Sony Spider-Man multiverse)
Dec 21 – Aquaman – (DC Extended Universe #6)
Dec 25 – Mary Poppins Returns

Feb 2019 – The New Mutants – (X-Men series #13)
Mar 2019 – How to Train Your Dragon 3
Mar 2019 – Captain Marvel – (Marvel Cinematic Universe Phase III, Chapter 9)
Mar 2019 – Dumbo – (Disney live-action remake)
Apr 2019 – Shazam! – (DC Extended Universe #7)
May 2019 – Avengers #4 – (Marvel Cinematic Universe Phase III, Chapter 10)
May 2019 – Aladdin – (Disney live-action remake)
Jun 2019 – Gambit – (X-Men Series #14)
Jun 2019 – Men in Black Untitled – (Men in Black #4)
Jun 2019 – Toy Story 4
Jul 2019 – Spider-Man Homecoming #2 – (Marvel Cinematic Universe)
Jul 2019 – Top Gun
Jul 2019 – The Lion King – (Disney live-action remake)
Jul 2019 – Terminator sequel – (Terminator #6)
Aug 2019 – Artemis Fowl
Nov 2019 – Wonder Woman #2 – (DC Extended Universe #8)
Nov 2019 – Frozen 2
Dec 2019 – Star Wars: Episode IX
Dec 2019 – Wicked
Jul 2020 – Indiana Jones #5
Jul 2020 – Minions #2


Night at the Theater

This week

Coming soon
Rent at The Fox Theater in Atlanta


Literary Pursuits

Currently reading
Planet Hulk via Kindle Unlimited
World War Hulk via Kindle Unlimited

Heart of Vengeance by Glynn Stewart and Terry Mixon
Oath of Vengeance by Glynn Stewart and Terry Mixon

I received both of these as Advanced Reader Copies (ARCs) in exchange for honest reviews. I also fell behind because the end of 2017 was a trial in its own right.

After apologizing to Terry for my tardiness, I promised to make these stories a priority in 2018.

The Vigilante series (which I really hope extends beyond these two titles in the future) is a mix of hard science fiction and pirate action on the high seas with a dash of Star Wars in some of the technology. The main character is Brad, a crewman on his uncle’s merchant ship who faces off against the solar system’s most feared pirate and loses in stellar fashion, but turns his failure into an ascendancy to revenge and opportunity.

The pirate flavor blended with hard science fiction is a unique touch, adding the rules of the pirate code (complete with swashbuckling action with pseudo-lightsabers) to a world of mass driver cannons, literal torpedoes, and non-faster than light travel. The stories have varying degrees of strengths and weaknesses: Heart of Vengeance is fast-paced and dynamic with substantial character growth, but it suffers from the plot driving the characters rather than allowing Brad to take charge; Oath of Vengeance flips that analysis, allowing Brad to take the center seat and push the plot, but his power is limited due to events which I really appreciated from the hard sci-fi aspect but serve to stall everything around them. While the roadblocks presented in Oath make sense, they also frustrate since the end goal is based on a hard time limit.

Weaknesses aside, these are both fun tales told in a pulpy, Saturday afternoon style, and are definitely worth a read.

I gave each book a rating of four out of five.

Both Heart of Vengeance and Oath of Vengeance are available at Amazon.


On the Virtual Air

The Hollywood Outsider Podcast postponed their normal schedule in order to say goodbye to Justin Macumber. It’s a touching tribute to a wonderful person. – [The Hollywood Outsider]

The Trek Files podcast has premiered on the Roddenberry Podcast Network. Hosted by “Dr. Trek” Larry Nemecek, a production and consulting veteran of the franchise, the show takes a deep-dive into the archives of Roddenberry Entertainment and the personal files of Gene Roddenberry. – [Roddenberry Podcast Network]


Women at Warp: A Roddenberry Star Trek Podcast

Women at Warp is a twice-monthly podcast where four women talk about Star Trek, its representations of women, contributions of women behind the scenes, and other fun Trek topics. The crew of Andi, Grace, Jarrah, and Sue have reviewed many aspects of the franchise from a unique perspective, and have also analyzed the voyages of our favorite captains and how they stand the test of time.

They also host a book club, movie commentaries, and weekly recaps of Star Trek: Discovery episodes.

Women at Warp can be found on the Roddenberry Podcast Network.


Adventures in Creative Criticality

The Timestamps Project
This week’s review is The Mark of the Rani, and next week is The Two Doctors.

Even though the goal line is moving forward as long as more Doctor Who is being made, I’ve finally reached the halfway point in this journey. I’m also starting to consider what I can do next. Long-term rewatch ideas include Star Trek and Stargate, as well as a first-time watch of Dark Shadows. Short-term ideas are far more prevalent, including Quantum LeapMacGyver, Babylon 5, Farscape, the various Star Wars series, the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and the James Bond films.

The key is time, which is limited in this era of blessing/curse with the plethora of genre entertainment.

Upcoming Podcasts
I have plans in motion for visits to Earth Station One and RetroBlasting. There are also plans afoot with some long-time friends and science fiction classics.

Upcoming Appearances
Aug 30-Sep 3: Dragon Con 2018


Until next time, enjoy the journey.

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