Once Upon a Time Special: “Hat Trick”

Okay okay, so I was wrong about there being a new episode of Grimm before last Friday, but there will be from now until May 18th! Ask Grimm writer, Akela Cooper, if you don’t believe me!

So, we have another Once Upon a Time special about “Hat Trick,” the episode in which we find out just what it was that drove the Mad Hatter mad.

Also, there are mad hats, yo.

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A Good Day for Richard Matheson: A New Musical & Century-Spanning Award

Take that, sparkling vampires! The Richard Matheson classic, I Am Legend has been named the Vampire Novel of the Century by the 2011 Bram Stoker Awards. The classic 1954 novel tells the story of a vampire pandemic which sweeps the world, leaving very few survivors. It has been adapted into a film three times: The Last Man on Earth (1964), The Omega Man (1971), and the correctly titled I Am Legend (2007).

In other Matheson news; his famous novel Bid Time Return (later retitled Somewhere in Time, read the bizarre story behind it here) is being adapted into a new musical. Details on the release of the musical can be found here.

The Great Alan Moore Reread: The Green Lantern Corps

Tor.com comics blogger Tim Callahan has dedicated the next twelve months to a reread of all of the major Alan Moore comics (and plenty of minor ones as well). Each week he will provide commentary on what he’s been reading. Welcome to the 23nd installment.

As Alan Moore was settling into his legendary Swamp Thing run after the first year on the DC job, as we saw last week – and with my look at the Superman stories – he branched out into other superhero properties with quick hit stories that carried resonances that have lasted until today.

Moore himself has, of course, repeatedly criticized modern corporate comics for strip mining his work rather than generating new ideas for contemporary audiences, and in the years before any specific announcements about anyone trampling over the corpse of Watchmen, he targeted DC’s Blackest Night summer event as an egregious example of “the comics industry going through [his] trashcan like raccoons.” Moore also provided this indignant and/or bemusedly mocking commentary on the subject: “I was noticing that DC seems to have based one of its latest crossovers in Green Lantern based on a couple of eight-page stories that I did 25 or 30 years ago. I would have thought that would seem kind of desperate and humiliating.” He went on to say, “When I have said in interviews that it doesn’t look like the American comic book industry has had an idea of its own in the past 20 or 30 years, I was just being mean. I didn’t expect the companies concerned to more or less say, ‘Yeah, he’s right. Let’s see if we can find another one of his stories from 30 years ago to turn into some spectacular saga.'”

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Series: The Great Alan Moore Reread

Buffy the Vampire Slayer Rewatch: The Wonderful World of Oz

It was Suzy McKee Charnas, author of the unforgettable werewolf story “Boobs,” who first pointed out—to me, anyway—that the werewolf is the most tragic of the classic horror monsters. It’s self-evident, once you consider it: they’re ordinary people for the vast majority of the time, sometimes they don’t even know they’re lycanthropes, they’re helpless to prevent their periodic transformation into monsters, and they’re contagious to boot. It is a terrible fate and one its victims rarely, if ever, deserve.

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Series: Buffy the Vampire Slayer on Tor.com

Celebrating National Poetry Month on Tor.com

April is National Poetry Month and to celebrate we’re taking the opportunity to showcase poetry written by notable names in the science fiction and fantasy fields.

When thinking of the mediums that deliver SFF, one invariably visualizes descriptive prose, be it in doorstopper hardcover or dog-eared paperback form, but poetry is well-entrenched within the SFF genres and often pops up with surprising regularity.

We first began featuring SFF poetry during April of last year, reprinting some favorites, dusting off hidden gems, and even commissioning some new work. (Which even got nominated for a World Fantasy Award!) You can see the line-up and read the poems in our Poetry Month index.

[Who we]

Series: Poetry Month

Winners of the 2011 Bram Stoker Awards Announced

The Horror Writers Association announced the winners of the 2011 Bram Stoker Awards™ at its annual awards banquet on Sunday, April 1st. The 2011 awards mark the 25th anniversary of the awards.

The award is named for Bram Stoker, best known as the author of Dracula. The trophy, which resembles a miniature haunted house, was designed by author Harlan Ellison and sculptor Steven Kirk.

This year’s winners include Jonathan Maberry, Stephen King, Joyce Carol Oates, Alan Moore, and more. And one very familiar book was labeled the Vampire Novel of the Century!

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Game of Thrones, Season 2, Ep. 1: “The North Remembers”

My how those direwolves have grown.

I won’t say it’s good to be the king, but it’s good to be watching a new episode of Game of Thrones. The premiere episode did a fantastic job of taking stock of the large cast of characters and introducing a few new ones. Some people are much as we left them (which in Joffrey’s case is a sadistic little jerk) and some find themselves in precarious new positions (Tyrion) but this episode seemed to belong to Robb Stark and it’s his actions that will set in motion the events to come.

Be warned: episode and book spoilers ahead.

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Series: HBO’s Game of Thrones

A Read of the Dark Tower: Constant Reader Tackles The Waste Lands, “Lud: A Heap of Broken Images”: Bridge and City, Sections 35-42

A heap of broken images, where the sun beats,

And the dead tree gives no shelter, the cricket no relief,

And the dry stone no sound of water.

—From T.S. Eliot’s “The Wastelands”


Welcome to A Read of the Dark Tower series. Join me each week as I, Constant Reader, tackle the magnum opus of Stephen King’s career for the first time. If you want to discuss in general terms or talk about these first sections, join me by commenting here.

We last left Roland bursting into the Tick-Tock Man’s hidey hole like a gunslinger as Jake and Oy do battle in Underground Lud. Eddie and Susannah are in the Cradle, trying to figure out Blaine the Mono’s riddle.

[Read this week]

Series: A Read of The Dark Tower

Steven Moffat Reveals New Picture of Old Dalek

Straight from Steven Moffat’s Twitter account comes this new Doctor Who set picture of Matt Smith and Karen Gillan posing with a Dalek from a bygone era. Apparently Moffat has been polling the cast as to which Dalek is their favorite kind, and Matt and Karen choose this one. (Arthur Darvill also got in on the conversation via Twitter, which you can read about on Bleeding Cool here.)

For now, feast your eyes on the Doctor and Amy and a 1960s Dalek! Moffat claims this is probably a spoiler, which makes us think ALL the versions of the Daleks are returning next season! 

Morning Roundup: Hey Bungalow Bill, What (Rancor) Did You Kill?

This giant Rancor, clearly killed by a big game hunter makes us think of the inevitable Ernest Hemingway/Star Wars mashup. Think about it. It writes itself:

The galaxy was far way. Farther away than most people would admit and it seemed even farther if you’d had too much to drink or if you’d just been shot in the leg, which was true of me and my friend, Montoya. We were dying down there in the sandpit, being brave for no one, but being brave all the same. The monster was dead and we’d killed it, which mattered a little bit, but not enough.

While you’re chewing on that, start your week off right with some offsite links.

Highlights include:

  1. An action movie featuring H.G. Wells, Jules Verne, and Robert Loius Stevenson is coming.
  2. New Doctor Who images straight from the BBC.
  3. Who could this giant “S” belong to?

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All Of Us Are In The Gutter: Review of Oscar!

I’ll admit that when I first heard about Oscar! I wasn’t impressed. “He’s a playwright famous for his bon mots, he’s a grouch who lives in a trash can: they fight crime.” Oscar Wilde (Geoffrey Rush) teaming up with Oscar the Grouch (Carroll Spinney) in a musical? It sounded like a one note joke. But then I heard that Charley Kaufman was writing the script, which seemed promising. It still seemed like Who Framed Roger Rabbit had covered this territory. But I was imagining the songs done as typical Muppet songs and as extraneous to the story. Nobody could possibly have imagined the impact of using Bollywood-style musical numbers in a film like this. But it’s the very surrealism that makes it work, along with Rush and Spinney’s perfect timing.

[Read more: some of us are looking at the stars]

Sword and Sensibility: Conan Creator Robert E. Howard’s Lesser Known Collaboration

At the time of his death in 1936, thirty-year-old Robert E. Howard had published hundreds of works of fiction across an astonishingly broad swath of genres. His voluminous output, according to Paul Herman of the Robert E. Howard Foundation, is estimated to have been “approximately 3.5 million words of fiction, poetry, letters and articles.” Among those millions of words were the iconic stories of Conan the Cimmerian, a character whose popularity has firmly established Howard’s reputation as the father of heroic fantasy, parallel to J.R.R. Tolkien’s place as father of epic fantasy.

But while Howard was an extraordinarily prolific writer, he was also a somewhat disorganized one and left behind a trunk of unpublished works. The so-called “Howard Trunk” contained thousands of typewritten pages by Howard. These abandoned stories and early drafts were collected and published in 2007 by The REH Foundation Press as The Last of the Trunk.

[One manuscript, however, baffled the Howard estate.]

Entirety of Game of Thrones Season 2 Leaked

In a shocking display of contempt for HBO, it appears that every detail about the highly-anticipated season 2 HBO drama Game of Thrones has been leaked, mere hours before the premiere of the show.

The massive leak originates from an obscure book carrying the dubious title A Clash of Kings, copies of which have already been distributed in both physical and electronic form, possibly worldwide.

HBO reps have confirmed that the contents of A Clash of Kings reveal the entirety of the upcoming season of Game of Thrones but did not offer any further information in regards to how the leaker obtained the information.

Unfortunately for HBO, the leaker himself is all too proud to take the credit.

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Series: HBO’s Game of Thrones

Covers Revealed for John Scalzi’s Manga Fantasy Trilogy

This past Friday, Tor Books announced that John Scalzi’s award-winning fantasy trilogy Shadow War of the Night Dragon will be adapted as a manga with artist Madeleine Rosca on illustration duties. (You can read an excerpt from the first book The Dead City here on Tor.com.)

Now, we’ve got an exclusive reveal of the full-size covers for the three-volume series!

[See the manga adaptation of Shadow War of the Night Dragon]

Weekly Highlights: Redshirts, Summer Movies, and When Robot Unicorns Attack!

You are busy! And we want to make life easier for you. So we’ve put together a roundup of the happenings around here this week. We hope you like them. We do. (But we’re a pretty weird bunch.)

Here’s some of what you might have missed:

  1. What Game of Thrones would look like in the style of a beautiful illuminated manuscript. (Also, House drinks for your GoT viewing party. Aaaand a chapter of The Winds of Winter.)
  2. The moral and ethical issues of The Hunger Games.
  3. Fanfic in the mainstream? What is Fifty Shades of Grey?
  4. Our thoughts on the summer movie lineup!
  5. Cumber-wizard! Wizard-batch? Cumber-wizard-batch.

[Head below to find out more!]

The Background to the Moorcock Multiverse: London Peculiar

Is there anything Michael Moorcock hasn’t done? Creator of some of our greatest literary anti-heroes — Elric of Melniboné, Jerry Cornelius, Colonel Pyat. Editor of the seminal New Worlds magazine. Musician. Counter-culture hero. Cosmopolitan resident of London, Paris, and Texas. Friend and correspondent of talents as lasting and varied as Arthur C. Clarke, William S. Burroughs, J.G. Ballard, Angela Carter, Andrea Dworkin, Mervyn Peake and Maeve Gilmore, Tom Disch, Iain Sinclair, Leigh Brackett, and Brian Aldiss. He’s even written a Doctor Who tie-in novel. Somehow, amidst all this activity, he has sustained a prolific journalistic career as an essayist and reviewer.

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