A Cost-Benefit Analysis of the Proposed Trade-Offs for the Overhaul of the Barricade July 30, 2014 A Cost-Benefit Analysis of the Proposed Trade-Offs for the Overhaul of the Barricade John Chu Fighting Turbulence requires sacrifices. The Colonel July 29, 2014 The Colonel Peter Watts The hives are sleeping giants. <em>To Eternity</em> July 24, 2014 To Eternity Wesley Allsbrook and Barrie Potter If all things were normal, Stuart would be considered quite a catch. Brisk Money July 23, 2014 Brisk Money Adam Christopher It's hard out there for a robotic detective.
From The Blog
July 29, 2014
Introduction to the H. P. Lovecraft Reread
Ruthanna Emrys and Anne M. Pillsworth
July 25, 2014
Huge New Cast and Bloopers. Highlights from the San Diego Comic Con Game of Thrones Panel
Chris Lough
July 22, 2014
What Makes Chinese Science Fiction Chinese?
Xia Jia
July 22, 2014
Everything I Learned from the Buffy Rewatch
Alyx Dellamonica
July 21, 2014
If This is the Plot for Star Wars: Episode VII, I Will Be Sad
Emily Asher-Perrin
Showing posts by: Emily Asher-Perrin click to see Emily Asher-Perrin's profile
Mon
Jul 7 2014 1:00pm

Space Arachnophobia—Star Wars: Young Jedi Knights: Diversity Alliance

Star Wars: Young Jedi Knights: Diversity Alliance coverIf you don’t like spiders, then the words “combat arachnid” are probably not going to make you very happy. In which case… hooray, you’re not a Jedi-in-training? But these kids are, so they’re probably going to have to deal with that at some point. If you guessed that they’ll have to deal with it this week, then you are probably Force-sensitive (or just appropriately observant)! But aren’t arachnids supposed to have eight legs? Aren’t twelve legs more than eight legs? There are the insistent questions that creep up on us at night.

Also, if you thought those Solo kids were going to leave the retrieval of a kidnapped man up to their super-competent father… well, they’re not, so sit back and enjoy Diversity Alliance!

[Read more]

Thu
Jul 3 2014 1:00pm

Watch All the Movies That Earth to Echo Was Derived From Instead

Earth to Echo

Here to suck some time out of your precious holiday is perhaps one of the most unoriginal sci-fi films of the past decade. It’s not just that it lifts material—it’s that it lifts that material in the laziest way possible. And if I sound a bit too harsh on a children’s film, it’s probably because this sort of film is always an easy sell for me. Alien/robot making connection with kids in need of a friend, the evil adults who are simply missing out on the wonder and trying to drag it down to the dirt.

I was less moved by Earth to Echo than I was by Real Steel, for god’s sake. That’s right, a Rock’em Sock’em Robot film was better at eliciting an emotional response from me than this movie.

[They should have called him Space Ninja, like Tuck wanted.]

Thu
Jul 3 2014 10:00am

The Harry Potter Reread: The Chamber of Secrets, Chapters 9 and 10

Harry Potter and the Chamber of SecretsThe Harry Potter Reread wishes that the “security questions” that websites use to let you retrieve passwords and the like were more inventive. Instead of “What’s you mother’s middle name?” or “What street did you grow up on?” how about some questions like “What weapon would you carry into a battle?” or “How do you feel about turnips, generally?” It would just make life more interesting.

This week, we’re going to do some detecting and get a teacher to give us access to restricted materials! Which is really how we’d prefer school to go, so no complaints here. We’re on chapters 9 and 10 of The Chamber of Secrets—The Writing on the Wall and The Rogue Bludger.

Index to the reread can be located here! Other Harry Potter and Potter-related pieces can be found under their appropriate tag. And of course, since we know this is a reread, all posts might contain spoilers for the entire series. If you haven’t read all the Potter books, be warned.

[Read more]

Mon
Jun 30 2014 3:00pm

“Know your place. Accept your place. Be a shoe.” Snowpiercer

Snowpiercer, Chris Evans, Jamie Bell

Going into Snowpiercer, the most important thing to remember is this: at its core, it is a horror film, though its sci-fi packaging would suggest otherwise. Remember how Danny Boyle’s Sunshine sucker-punched you the same way? Well, this stars Chris Evans, too. He seems to have an affinity for these sorts of films when he’s not wearing spangly outfits.

[Living at the tail]

Mon
Jun 30 2014 1:30pm

John Constantine Will Not Smoke in His Upcoming TV Series—What Else Will NBC Give Up?

Constantine, television

Hold the phone. After the cautious good faith that the NBC Constantine series has been trying to stock up among Hellblazer fans, it would seem it has just lost a key negotiating battle—John Constantine will not be allowed to smoke on television.

[That’s a big blow...]

Mon
Jun 30 2014 1:00pm

Jedi Study Abroad Credits—Star Wars: Young Jedi Knights: Shards of Alderaan

Young Jedi Knights, Star Wars, Shards of AlderaanWe’ve got some generational repetition going down this week on the Young Jedi Knights Reread! Which is just as well, because we’re pretty sure you’re not a Solo until someone in Mandalorian combat armor has chased you down.

Notice we didn’t say Boba Fett. (Spoiler: the authors wanted it to be Boba Fett. Additional spoiler: it’s not Boba Fett.) But it’s pretty darn close—how close? You’re going to have to read along to find out! It’s not Gregor the Clone Trooper. We’re sad about that, but mostly because Gregor was the man.

By the way, did you ever wonder what became of Leia’s destroyed homeworld? You’re in luck because Shards of Alderaan is here to let us in on some secrets.

[Read more]

Fri
Jun 27 2014 10:00am

Liveblogging Season Five of Star Wars: The Clone Wars

Star Wars The Clone Wars, Anakin, Ahsoka, The Wrong Jedi

Season 5 of The Clone Wars was going along fine and dandy (though with a distinct lack of Padmé) until the very end when suddenly EVERYTHING WAS RUINED. I mean, they made good narrative choices, but I am cry. And the sixth season only has 13 episodes, which is not enough time to do anything, so I have a feeling that some of this stuff is going to leave me hanging forever, and I will always be upset. Just… great job failing, Jedi Order. Not saying this is why you’re about to be wiped out, except for the part where it really is.

By which I mean to say… um, here’s a liveblog?

[Someone get Darth Maul a drink.]

Thu
Jun 26 2014 11:00am

The Harry Potter Reread: The Chamber of Secrets, Chapters 7 and 8

The Harry Potter Reread would be more excited about the football/soccer World Cup if people could fly in it. Not that it isn’t plenty exciting, it could just use some oomph. Perhaps if they introduce bludgers? Could you make a real bludger without magic? These are the questions that plague the reread at night.

This week’s chapters show us how nasty little rich kids always get their way, how some wizard curses are different from Muggle ones, and most importantly—THE CHAMBER OF SECRETS HAS BEEN OPENED. We’re onto chapters 7 and 8: Mudbloods and Murmurs and The Deathday Party.

Index to the reread can be located here! Other Harry Potter and Potter-related pieces can be found under their appropriate tag. And of course, since we know this is a reread, all posts might contain spoilers for the entire series. If you haven’t read all the Potter books, be warned.

[Can I have a pumpkin big enough to sit in?]

Mon
Jun 23 2014 1:00pm

We Will Get Fooled Again (By the Emperor)—Star Wars Young Jedi Knights: Jedi Under Siege

Star Wars: Young Jedi Knights: Jedi Under SiegeThe Young Jedi Knights reread has reached the pinnacle of its first arc! Shadow Academy vs. Jedi Praxeum—who throws down? Who rises up? Who dies on board an exploding space station? Who unexpectedly helps out? What else blows up? (That last one is actually the surprising part.)

We’re talking about Jedi Under Siege, which was the final installment of the first Young Jedi Knight arc. We’ve got young Jedi against Nightsisters, Imperials against New Republic forces, master against former apprentice. There’s a lot going on, so we’re putting on our Force-thinking caps and trying to piece it all out. Because coming of age one generation after Luke Skywalker was never going to be easy.

[Read more]

Thu
Jun 19 2014 9:00am

The Harry Potter Reread: The Chamber of Secrets, Chapters 5 and 6

The Harry Potter Reread could probably use some more coffee, but it has sadly reached its morning limit. This seems unjust. Wizards probably have spells for those sorts of things, and that’s alongside tea. If they can bounce from great heights, they can probably take all the stimulants!

Today’s chapters are primarily concerned with bad decisions that seem great when you’re twelve, and the realization that no one should ever wear solid aquamarine anything, let alone aquamarine floor-length robes. It’s time for chapters 5 and 6 of Chamber of Secrets—The Whomping Willow and Gilderoy Lockhart.

Index to the reread can be located here! Other Harry Potter and Potter-related pieces can be found under their appropriate tag. And of course, since we know this is a reread, all posts might contain spoilers for the entire series. If you haven’t read all the Potter books, be warned.

[Read more]

Mon
Jun 16 2014 3:00pm

Feed Me, Lowie, Feed Me Now!—Star Wars: Young Jedi Knights: Darkest Knight

Star Wars, Young Jedi Knights, Darkest KnightAdventures on Kashyyyk! Did you have any idea that Wookiee coming-of-age rights would be so perilous? We figure we probably should have guessed—you don’t get to be as rocking as Chewbacca without going through it.

This week’s Young Jedi Knight reread is Darkest Knight! If you’re groaning at the word play, we’re not surprised, though the title is apt in this case. We get to meet Lowie’s sister in this one, and see exactly how Zekk is doing with that dark side scholarship he signed up for. Carnivorous plants are forthcoming.

[Read more]

Sun
Jun 15 2014 11:00am

The Lion King Turns 20 Today… and It Was the Most Unlikely Success Story You Will Ever Hear

The Lion King

You can often separate your generations out by Disney movies, though it seems a strange thing to do. And one of the movies that was absolutely key for mine happened to be The Lion King.

But here’s the kicker—The Lion King wasn’t intended as a golden egg-laying goose. In fact, it was the unloved cousin that Disney wanted swept under the rug from the outset. It was expected to fail. So for its 20th birthday, here are a few tales, a few behind the scenes gems that make it clear why this odd-ball project that was based on no fairy tale whatsoever became something of a classic.

[The horse no one would bet on…]

Thu
Jun 12 2014 2:00pm

The Harry Potter Reread: The Chamber of Secrets, Chapters 3 and 4

The Harry Potter Reread is thinking about an art project where we recreate the books via GIFs from various popular tv shows… that’s a lie, that project was never considered, though it does sound like the sort of creepy thing that might crop up fifty years from now in a Harry Potter Museum of some sort.

This week we finally get to see the inside of a wizard home! We meet Gilderoy Lockhart! Throw some gnomes around! Also, there’s a flying Ford Anglia, which is a super classy way to travel. We’re on chapters 3 and 4 of The Chamber of Secrets—The Burrow and Flourish and Blotts.

Index to the reread can be located here! Other Harry Potter and Potter-related pieces can be found under their appropriate tag. And of course, since we know this is a reread, all posts might contain spoilers for the entire series. If you haven’t read all the Potter books, be warned.

[Read more]

Thu
Jun 12 2014 9:00am

The Perfect Retcon to Star Trek Into Darkness?

Benedict Cumberbatch, Khan, Star Trek Into Darkness

Star Trek Into Darkness showed up on Netflix recently, and I decided to watch it again (against my better judgement). And there are still some fun moments in that thing, but overall, it’s… really disheartening. Many have said this, so I won’t add to the summit of Mount Critique. We know how it went: None of the shout-outs to former canon were ever earned, Kirk degenerated into a raging frat boy, Carol Marcus was practically an unperson who existed to be RoboCop’s daughter—it’s all been said eloquently and amusingly across various webispheres.

But I did have an idea on how they might fix one of the film’s biggest problems.

[My name is Khan?]

Mon
Jun 9 2014 1:00pm

Tenel Ka, Warrior Princess—Star Wars: Young Jedi Knights: Lightsabers

Star Wars Young Jedi Knights Lightsabers This is basically the YJK reread Natalie and Emily have been waiting to get to. For so many reasons. Mostly for the fact that it goes nowhere anyone would expect a kid’s novel to go, particularly not a Star Wars one. Some real s*** happens in this book.

As titles go, nothing really screams Star Wars more than “lightsabers.” I mean, maybe just “Jedi” or “Vader,” but “lightsabers” is a pretty good move. And since getting your own lightsaber is one of the biggest steps on the road to Jedi Knighthood, you know that this is going to be pretty important. So are you ready for the Serious Issues to get tackled in this series? Because we’re going there.

[“Want to hear a joke?”]

Thu
Jun 5 2014 2:30pm

Fictional Symbols on Political Stages: Thailand Protestors Adopt Hunger Games Salute

Thailand protestors

A military coup in Thailand has led many protestors to adopt the three-fingered salute from Suzanne Collins’ Hunger Games series as a form of resistance to the current political state of their country. Of course, while oppression may be counted as a throughline in the situation, the specifics of the upheaval in Thailand is not solidly comparable to the dystopian future Collins created.

Instead, it is a reminder of how the symbols we find in fiction can affect our lives and the world around us.

[Read more]

Thu
Jun 5 2014 9:00am

The Harry Potter Reread: The Chamber of Secrets, Chapters 1 and 2

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, coverThe Harry Potter Reread has grown up so big and tough, it gets a whole other book! Or maybe, like, six whole other books! But we’ll just start with the one, because we should pace ourselves. We might get indigestion otherwise.

So now we get a sample of what Harry’s summer really turned out like, and we get to meet our very first house-elf. Time for Chapters 1 and 2 of The Chamber of Secrets—The Worst Birthday and Dobby’s Warning.

Index to the reread can be located here! Other Harry Potter and Potter-related pieces can be found under their appropriate tag. And of course, since we know this is a reread, all posts might contain spoilers for the entire series. If you haven’t read all the Potter books, be warned.

[...and the hedge was staring back.]

Mon
Jun 2 2014 1:00pm

How to Make Sith and Infuriate Solos?—Star Wars: Young Jedi Knights: The Lost Ones

Star Wars: The Lost Ones, Young Jedi KnightsReady to find out about a special friend you never knew Jacen and Jaina had? It’s time to meet Zekk and go on vacation and all sorts of other fun stuff because the Young Jedi Knights Reread is back with The Lost Ones!

We hope you missed the Shadow Academy because they’re up to their old tricks! (Actually, they’re new tricks if we’re being real honest here, and we should be honest since the Shadow Academy is trying really hard, you guys.) Recruitment is up, or it’s about to be up by at least one. And diplomatic functions are an easy place to get made fun of, so watch out for that next time you find yourself at one.

[Who are those lost ones, anyhow?]

Mon
Jun 2 2014 11:30am

Maleficent is Too Busy Taking Names to Worry About the Haters

Maleficent, Angelina Jolie

So... Maleficent has been panned by a lot of people. And while it is lacking in certain technical and structural merits, I’m not going to deny it—it’s lovely. Got some flaws, but if you’ve been holding out for a fairy tale retelling that manages to truly empower, this is where it’s at.

You’re just going to have to get over any issues you might have with Angelina Jolie. Yes, you.

Major spoilers for the film below.

[There is no such thing as True Love’s Kiss]

Fri
May 30 2014 11:15am

Pity Captain Kirk, For He Has No iPhone: Douglas Preston and John Scalzi at BEA!

John Scalzi, Douglas Preston, BEA 2014

John Scalzi and Douglas Preston took to the stage on Thursday at this year’s BEA to talk about the future! Do you ever wonder what it would be like for an artificial intelligence to encounter the internet for the first time? Or whether you’d rather live on Mars than have the internet? Or perhaps you’re concerned about how the digital age will affect the next generation? Fear not! This will soothe your worried heart.

Or it might just leave you with new, more complex questions—the future is difficult that way.

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