Selfies September 17, 2014 Selfies Lavie Tidhar Smile for the camera. When Gods and Vampires Roamed Miami September 16, 2014 When Gods and Vampires Roamed Miami Kendare Blake A Goddess Wars story As Good As New September 10, 2014 As Good As New Charlie Jane Anders She has three chances to save the world. Tuckitor’s Last Swim September 9, 2014 Tuckitor’s Last Swim Edith Cohn A hurricane is coming.
From The Blog
September 18, 2014
Cast As Thou Wilt: Kushiel’s Dart Dream Cast
Natalie Zutter
September 17, 2014
How Goldfinger Bound Sci-Fi to James Bond
Ryan Britt
September 15, 2014
Rereading the Empire Trilogy: Servant of the Empire, Part 1
Tansy Rayner Roberts
September 13, 2014
If You Want a Monster to Hunt, You’ll Get It. Doctor Who: “Listen”
Chris Lough
September 11, 2014
The Ghostbusters are an Antidote to Lovecraft’s Dismal Worldview
Max Gladstone
Showing posts by: theresa delucci click to see theresa delucci's profile
Thu
Sep 18 2014 2:00pm

Gaming Roundup: Visit Hyrule as You’ve Never Seen it Before in Hyrule Warriors

At first glance, one might be forgiven for mistaking Hyrule Warriors for another entry in Nintendo’s iconic Zelda series. The game is set in Hyrule. Zelda’s in it. Link’s in it. Everyone from Ganondorf to Princess Ruto to the Great Deku Tree is present and accounted for. But this isn’t your father’s Zelda, oh no. While Hyrule Warriors adds what Nintendo hopes will become another A-List title to the Wii U’s arsenal, those expecting anything akin to a classic Zelda experience will be in for a surprise.

[Prepare to save Hyrule... again.]

Fri
Sep 12 2014 1:00pm

Gaming Roundup: Next-Gen Gaming Meets its Destiny

There was plenty going on this week in gaming—from the Xbox’s abject failure in Japan to the 15th anniversary of the Dreamcast—but one story pretty clearly stood out from all the rest. Destiny, Bungie’s much-anticipated post-Halo IP, launched, finally giving both next-gen (or is it current-gen? I feel like we can call them current-gen now) consoles their first true killer app (with apologies to the Xbox-exclusive Titanfall).

[“It doesn’t matter who you are. Only what you will become.”]

Thu
Sep 4 2014 3:30pm

Gaming Roundup: The Resident Evil Remake Gets a Remake

Resident Evil remake

Give Capcom credit—they know which side their bread is buttered on. When Shinji Makami’s classic survival horror franchise, Resident Evil, first launched all the way back in 1996, it met with substantial critical and financial success that spawned a trail of sequels and tie-ins 23 games deep, with the original game warranting a 2002 remake exclusively for the GameCube (which, predictably enough, also met with substantial critical and financial success). Is it, then, really any surprise that 2002’s Resident Evil REmake is receiving an HD remastering for current and next-gen consoles next year, over a decade after its initial launch?

[There’s a party in Raccoon City and everyone’s invited...]

Thu
Aug 28 2014 2:00pm

Gaming Roundup: Grab a Friend or Four to Play Dragon Age: Inquisition

BioWare’s upcoming Dragon Age: Inquisition is looking better and better as its launch date nears. With each passing month the developer has teased a little more of the game, and this last week brought us news of a particularly tantalizing nature: the latest entry in the Dragon Age franchise will feature a four-player online cooperative play mode.

[“Lead them or fall...”]

Mon
Aug 25 2014 10:00am

Not with a Bang: True Blood’s Powerfully Unsexy Series Finale

True Blood Thank You

Leave it to True Blood to figure out one last stake to twist into the hearts of its diminished audience. Will Sookie and Bill be together forever? Will Eric get naked one last time? Will we see some characters get a little closure? Will the show go completely off the rails and end up with Sookie becoming president of a new, vampiric, world order?

Nope!

I mean, this was once an Alan Ball show and he was responsible for the best series finale ever—Six Feet Under. But Ball is long gone. And while we didn’t go into full-on Dexter levels of lunacy or TV-punching rage like Lost or Battlestar Galactica, True Blood’s finale was definitely the most flaccid sixty-five minutes of TV in some time. Because, you know, if an excellent series finale is supposed to contain the show’s mini-thesis, True Blood’s running theme was most certainly ham-fisted meditations on conventional morality by fully-clothed people, right?

[Put a stake in it, it’s done...]

Fri
Aug 22 2014 11:30am

Gaming Roundup: Gamescom 2014 Edition

The Vanishing of Ethan Carter Gaming Roundup

Gamescom—Europe’s largest annual gaming convention and the second largest in the world—came and went last week in Cologne, Germany, and left in its wake a plethora of previews and trailers for excited gamers to sift through. Most of the industry’s major players were present, and the focus was very much on the continued development and maturation of next-gen consoles in the marketplace—a circumstance balancing the most viewed and approachable games of next year.

[So many games, so little space...]

Mon
Aug 18 2014 10:00am

True Blood Season 7, Episode 9: “Love is to Die”

True Blood Love is to Die

Tonight’s episode of True Blood was the second to last. And I’m not just talking about Ginger.

I’ll be here all week, folks. Until next week, when it is the coffin of this mouldering show is lowered into the ground, never to rise again. We hope. The best I can say is that this week’s episode wasn’t outright offensive like last week’s and that it focused more on the romance than the plot. I like character moments, especially if the character is Jessica, but really, this hour was a whole lot of rehashing things that were already spelled out for us two seasons ago.

So while Jason and Eric suffered through some blue balls, True Blood itself couldn’t even tease us with anything truly fun for the finale.

Spoilers and a supernatural deathpools after the cut...

[Read more...]

Mon
Aug 11 2014 11:00am

True Blood Season 7, Episode 8: “Almost Home”

True Blood Almost Home

Let’s just say that after this episode, I’ll be happy to dance on True Blood’s grave.

This season started off sloppily, picked up in the middle, and is now careening towards something that looks like an ending, but is more just a crash against misdirected fan service and muddled writing. What’s missing is any kind of emotional resonance. But I could overlook a lot of that in the spirit of recognizing that this show is a shadow of its former self and a weird determination to see how characters I once liked ride off into the sunset.

And then True Blood went from being so-bad-it’s-good to legitimately offensive.

[Tara speaks at last and it’s really upsetting...]

Thu
Aug 7 2014 2:00pm

Gaming Roundup: Assassin’s Creed: Rogue Targets Your Inner Arctic Explorer

In the surprising-yet-not category, Ubisoft revealed earlier this week that they’re officially cranking out yet another Assassin’s Creed game this year. Assassin’s Creed: Rogue launches this holiday season, and appears to be a last-gen peace offering to gamers who haven’t yet upgraded to the Xbox One or PS4, and accordingly have no means to play the forthcoming Assassin’s Creed: Unity. While more dedicated fans will likely be able to speak to this with more authority than I... is anyone else getting burned out on this franchise simply due to the sheer volume of content being churned out?

[No official word yet on whether Ubi managed to learn how to animate the female form for this game.]

Tue
Aug 5 2014 12:15pm

True Blood Season 7, Episode 7: “May Be the Last Time”

True Blood May Be the Last Time

Be careful what you wish for.

Fans of True Blood—and those watching out of habit—have been wondering who Sookie might end up with by series’ end and we might have gotten an answer last night. But since we’re three episodes from the final episode, is this love meant to last? And, moreover, did it have to be so sad and...veiny? But there were plenty of other fan service nuggets that didn’t satisfy either. So maybe last night’s theme wasn’t nostalgia so much as frustration.

At least Arlene was suffering from the good kind of frustration.

Spoilers and salty language after the cut.

[Fairies, dwarves, and vampires behaving badly...]

Thu
Jul 24 2014 3:00pm

Gaming Roundup: Die and Enjoy It in Lords of the Fallen

Lords of the Fallen

From Software’s Dark Souls franchise went a long way toward mainstreaming the concept of insanely difficult, yet fun gaming. Polish developer CI Games, in conjunction with German studio Deck13 Interactive, is making no secret of the fact that they hope to follow in From’s tradition with their latest title, Lords of the Fallen.

[“The sins I have committed have left their mark. Now I shall leave mine.”]

Mon
Jul 21 2014 12:00pm

True Blood Season 7, Episode 5: “Lost Cause”

True Blood Lost Cause

I’m a sucker for a TV party, so, as unexpected as last night’s big memorial party was, seeing as it’s only been three in-show days since the last Bon Temps gathering ended in mass casualties, any chance for lots of characters to bump up against (and/or stab) one another is cause for celebration.

So, yes, this was another human-centric and mostly not terrible episode of True Blood. And, like Andy Bellefleur, life in Louisiana marches forward. Just some people won’t be marching much longer.

And then the freaking Yakuza showed up. And True Blood was nauseating again.

Spoilers and saucy hand gestures after the katana cut...

[Read more...]

Fri
Jul 18 2014 10:30am

Gaming Roundup: Virginia Promises Interactive Drama with a Lynchian Flair

Virgina gaming roundup

First person indie adventure game Gone Home did a lot of good for the interactive storytelling genre last year. The unexpected hit touched on all the right notes: a deftly told story, interesting character work, pitch-perfect atmosphere, and a heavy dose of 90s nostalgia. In many ways, Gone Home helped make it okay for games to be about the story and only about the story. The next step? More interactive drama games. Enter Variable State with their 90s cult classic TV-inspired Virginia.

[Any game citing Twin Peaks and The X-Files as core inspirations is going to have our undivided attention.]

Mon
Jul 14 2014 11:25am

True Blood Season 7, Episode 4: “Death is Not the End”

True Blood Death is not the End

Maybe it was my 90s nostalgia, maybe I was just in a forgiving mood, but that was not a terrible episode of True Blood. I know. Crazy, right?

Maybe we can get a spinoff miniseries of Eric and Pam’s misadventures in the past. Hell, I would settle for a whole episode of just Pam and Eric dealing with customers at their video store. Having once worked at just such a place, I imagine Pam would be ten times more merciless (and ten times more hilarious) when she revokes memberships due to late fees.

It wasn’t all pleated pants and Red Vines jokes though. Despite her most noble efforts to make everything about her, Sookie wasn’t as big a player last night. Oh wait; less Sookie = better episode. Eureka! If only True Blood thought of this formula three seasons ago.

[Spoilers and surprise guests after the jump.]

Thu
Jul 10 2014 2:00pm

Gaming Roundup: Alien: Isolation Promises to Get It Right by Going Back to the Beginning

Alien Isolation

Last year brought us the travesty that was Aliens: Colonial Marines. Between Ridley Scott being involved with storyboarding the game and developer Gearbox Software being given license to make the game canon, potential was vast, but execution was deeply flawed—the game launched as a buggy, derivative, universally panned mess, rather than the tightly focused piece of survival horror gamers were hoping for. This year, developer The Creative Assembly took a stab at getting the IP back on track, taking E3 by storm with Alien: Isolation, and early word is this game does not disappoint.

Oh, and did we mention they reunited the cast of Alien for the game’s first DLC? Bet we’ve got your attention now.

[“I think... I think there’s something here.”]

Mon
Jul 7 2014 12:00pm

True Blood Season 7, Episode 3: “Fire in the Hole”

True Blood

[Insert string of colorful expletives here.]

Really, True Blood?

I guess you get the television you deserve. If you’re lazily watching a formerly enjoyably sexy soap opera limp towards its end game, you shouldn’t be mad when said show’s actual writers feel lazy, too.

But still, last night’s hour was so weak, I felt as if I’d been trolled. By a TV show. As in, oh, sweet summer child, you thought you already knew all the ways in which True Blood can be awful? Well, watch what passes for closure in Bon Temps!

Sad trombones and spoilers after the fold.

[Read more...]

Thu
Jul 3 2014 2:30pm

Gaming Roundup: Elite: Dangerous Gives You A Universe

Elite Dangerous gaming roundup

Last week, we took a look at No Man’s Sky, an upcoming PS4 space simulator featuring a virtually limitless universe and emphasizing exploration—a game that Sony hopes will become a key selling point for their next-gen consoles on release. This week (at our readers’ behest and because, well, it also looks pretty damn cool), we highlight Elite: Dangerous, an equally ambitious space trading and combat simulator poised to offer similar freedoms and open-ended universes as No Man’s Sky, only sooner and with its own unique stylings.

[“Blaze your own trail...”]

Mon
Jun 30 2014 12:30pm

True Blood Season 7, Episode 2: “I Found You”

True Blood I Found YouI wish all programming on HBO last night had a theme to go along with the premiere of its new series, The Leftovers. If only everyone not Lafayette or Pam could mysteriously disappear from True Blood. Then we might have a really entertaining show.

It wasn’t all bad: a much-missed Nordic vampire bookended the hour. And... well, yeah, those were pretty much the only good bits.

Strangely not vanishing from True Blood? Viewers. Last week’s season premiere was down from the year prior, but still considered a solid performer for the show. We are all in this hate-watch together, friends.

Spoilers ahead. If you care about that kind of thing.

[“Read more...”]

Thu
Jun 26 2014 2:00pm

Gaming Roundup: No Man’s Sky Soars Through the Boundaries of Genre

No Man's Sky Gaming Roundup

No Man’s Sky was, in many ways, the revelation of E3 to gamers around the world. The PS4 exclusive has managed to push its way to the forefront of industry intrigue via tantalizing previews and a spectacular showing at gaming’s biggest event of the year. But what is it about this game that makes it so exciting, really? We’ve seen open world games before. We’ve seen space fighters before. What makes No Man’s Sky stand out?

[Forget open world. We’re entering open universe territory.]

Mon
Jun 23 2014 2:00pm

True Blood’s Final Season Premiere: “Jesus Gonna Be Here”

True Blood

No one’s expecting Game of Thrones-level excellence here, but HBO’s True Blood has its own measuring stick. Gooey globs of dead vampires? Check. Strong sexual content and bare breasts? Check. Pam dropping hilarious F-bombs? Check. Baby-vamp Jessica crying and being all Emmy-worthy? Check. Sookie doing something completely stupid? Double check.

By that regard, “Jesus Gonna Be Here” was a pretty great True Blood premiere, setting up Bon Temps for a final confrontation between the supernatural and the human. It helps that last season’s awfulness was pretty much wiped clean in the previous episode. It’s a big ol’ reset on a show literally on its last legs, as this is the final season. For the few remaining die-hards, the tension should be enough to keep things interesting. And for viewers like me, watching more out of nostalgia and curiosity, there’s just enough humor—intentional or not—and sex appeal and even some genuine surprises that I almost feel excited that the show is back. Or maybe I’m just deluding myself into thinking True Blood will come full circle and go out as satisfyingly as it was ushered in.

[Spoilers and salty language after the cut...]